Global Markets: Stocks stall on trade uncertainty, German data hits euro
Global stocks edged lower on Thursday, as investors looked for tangible signs of progress in U.S.-China trade talks while the euro was dented after disappointing economic data out of Germany.
Mixed reports about the progress of a trade deal left investors unwilling to take on more risk after a five-day run of gains that sent stocks to a six-month high.
White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said on Wednesday the two sides aimed to bridge differences during talks, which could extend beyond three days this week. On Thursday, an administration official said the White House is not expected to announce a date on Thursday for a meeting between President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping on trade.
After a run of mixed economic data, Friday`s U.S. payrolls report also loomed large for investors for signs the labor market remained robust. Labor market data on Thursday showed weekly jobless claims fell to their lowest level since 1969.
"Things are pretty quiet and there has been a real lack of news, and really it`s been a mixed bag as far as what we`ve been seeing from economic data this week," said Sahak Manuelian, managing director, equities trading at Wedbush Securities in Los Angeles.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 168.82 points, or 0.64%, to 26,386.95, the S&P 500 gained 4.43 points, or 0.15%, to 2,877.83 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.71 points, or 0.02%, to 7,893.84.
Germany`s data showed industrial orders fell at their sharpest rate in more than two years in February, driven largely by a slump in foreign demand.
It compounded signals that Europe`s largest economy has had a soft start to the year, held the euro near $1.12 and sent German Bund yields back below zero.Shares in Europe also retreated, as the STOXX 600 pulled back from eight-month highs. The pan-European STOXX 600 index lost 0.25% and MSCI`s gauge of stocks across the globe shed 0.05%.
The dollar firmed against a basket of major currencies while sterling fell on concerns Britain could be staring at a long Brexit delay.
Reuters reported 25 lawmakers in Britain`s opposition Labour Party have urged their leader, Jeremy Corbyn, to go the "extra step" if there is a chance of agreeing a Brexit deal in talks with Prime Minister Theresa May.
The dollar index rose 0.22%, with the euro down 0.18% to $1.1214. Sterling was last trading at $1.3083, down 0.58% on the day.
Brent crude resumed its upward climb towards $70 per barrel as expectations of tight global supply outweighed pressure from rising U.S. inventories and production.
U.S. crude fell 0.3% to $62.27 per barrel and Brent was last at $69.33, up 0.03% on the day.
(This article has not been edited by Zeebiz editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
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