The Hong Kong stock market on Friday wrote a finish to the four-day losing streak in which it had plummeted more than 1,530 points or 6 percent. The Hang Seng Index now sits just above the 24,920-point plateau although it may head south again on Monday.
The global forecast for the Asian markets is soft on sinking crude oil prices and on the outlook for interest rates. The European and U.S. markets were down and the Asian bourses are expected to open in similar fashion.
The Hang Seng finished sharply higher on Friday following mixed performances from the properties, casinos and technology stocks.
For the day, the index climbed 252.91 points or 1.03 percent to finish at the daily high of 24,920.76 after trading as low as 24,424.74.
Among the actives, AAC Technologies rose 1.39 percent, while Alibaba Group advanced 2.24 percent, Alibaba Health Info skyrocketed 8.88 percent, ANTA Sports gathered 3.09 percent, China Life Insurance skidded 1.22 percent, China Mengniu Dairy accelerated 3.84 percent, China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) retreated 1.02 percent, China Resources Land jumped 3.64 percent, CITIC tanked 1.77 percent, CNOOC plunged 1.94 percent, Country Garden perked 3.00 percent, CSPC Pharmaceutical spiked 5.01 percent, Galaxy Entertainment strengthened 2.69 percent, Hang Lung Properties added 1.71 percent, Henderson Land fell 0.30 percent, Hong Kong & China Gas dropped 0.49 percent, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China lost 0.46 percent, Li Ning soared 5.48 percent, Longfor tumbled 1.36 percent, Meituan climbed 3.53 percent, New World Development sank 0.57 percent, Sands China plummeted 2.84 percent, Sun Hung Kai Properties was up 0.19 percent, Techtronic Industries declined 0.80 percent, Xiaomi Corporation gained 1.55 percent, WuXi Biologics surged 5.76 percent and AIA Group was unchanged.
The lead from Wall Street is firmly negative as the major averages opened lower on Friday and stayed that way throughout the session.
The Dow shed 166.44 points or 0.48 percent to finish at 34,584.88, while the NASDAQ sank 137.96 points or 0.91 percent to end at 15,043.97 and the S&P 500 fell 40.76 points or 0.91 percent to close at 4,432.99. For the week, the Dow eased 0.1 percent, the NASDAQ lost 0.5 percent and the S&P fell 0.6 percent.
The weakness on Wall Street came as traders looked ahead to next week’s highly anticipated monetary policy meeting from the Federal Reserve. The Fed is widely expected to leave monetary policy unchanged but could address the outlook for its asset purchase program.
The minutes of the Fed’s last meeting signaled the central bank might begin scaling back asset purchases by the end of the year. With recent disappointing economic data suggesting the Fed could delay, traders will pay close attention to the wording of the post-meeting statement.
Crude oil futures settled lower Friday on reports crude supply is being restored after hurricanes Ida and Nicholas had impacted production in the Gulf of Mexico. A firm dollar also led to the decline in crude oil prices. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for October fell $0.64 or 0.9 percent at $71.97 a barrel. WTI crude futures gained more than 3 percent for the week.
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