Asian Shares Mixed as Investors Are on Corporate Earnings Watch

TOKYO (AP) -
A man walks past an electronic stock indicator of a securities firm in Tokyo, Monday. (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi)

Shares were mixed on Monday in Asia, with Chinese markets shrugging off weaker manufacturing indicators while Japan’s Nikkei index sagged as the yen surged against the dollar. A raft of corporate earnings is due out Monday.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 index slipped 0.1 percent to 19,944.84 and the Kospi in South Korea was flat at 2,400.09. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index jumped 1.0 percent to 27,249.01 and the Shanghai Composite index climbed 0.6 percent to 3,273.75. The S&P ASX 200 of Australia gained 0.4 percent to 5,724.70 and India’s Sensex added 0.4 percent to 32,440.05. Shares in Southeast Asia were mostly lower.

Some 350 companies are due to release second-quarter earnings on Monday just in Japan, and investors are watching for more upbeat reports following earlier strong results in the region, as well as in the U.S. Results from a little more than half of the companies in the S&P 500 have been mostly encouraging.

“With 57 percent of the companies on the comprehensive S&P 500 index reported so far, it is unavoidable for us to discuss earnings performances. On a broad level we have seen both sales and earnings surprise largely match up to the strong Q1 performance, keeping the markets going,” Jingyi Pan of IG said in a commentary. “The new week brings another one-fourth of the companies on the S&P 500 index which could see the focus slightly moderate and shift toward earnings here in Asia instead.”

Global markets sagged Friday after Amazon and other big companies reported quarterly results that underwhelmed investors. Standard & Poor’s 500 index lost 0.1 percent to 2,472.10, ending the week near where it started after setting a record high during the middle of it. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 0.2 percent to 21,830.31, setting another all-time high. The Nasdaq composite edged 0.1 percent lower to 6,374.68.

The price of oil capped off its best week since early December last week, gaining 9 percent, and Monday extended those gains. Benchmark U.S. crude rose 19 cents to $49.90 in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It climbed 67 cents Friday to settle at $49.71 per barrel and touched its highest level since May. Brent crude, the international standard, added 23 cents to $52.45 per barrel.

The dollar fell to 110.51 Japanese yen from 110.67 yen on Friday. The euro slipped to $1.1747 from $1.1756, and the British pound was flat at $1.3133.