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November 25, 2020
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Global shares mixed as U.S. virus aid hopes fade

TOKYO — Global shares were mixed Tuesday, after Wall Street’s overnight decline as hopes faded Washington will come through with badly needed aid for the U.S. economy before the U.S. presidential election.

France’s CAC 40 gained 02% in early trading to 4,954.42, while Germany’s DAX slipped 0.3% to 12,816.44. Britain’s FTSE 100 edged up 0.4% to 5,910.60. U.S. shares were set for gains, with Dow futures up 0.5% at 28,238. S&P 500 futures rose 0.6% to 3,444.12.

Rising coronavirus caseloads are dragging on sentiment as investors consider the likelihood of further business shutdowns and other restrictions on business activity.

“The situation is getting worse in Europe as it faces the second Covid-19 wave, and local governments are trying their best to bring the situation under control,” said Naeem Aslam of Avatrade.com.

“The current restrictive measures, which include strict lockdowns in some places, will suppress economic recovery. This particular concern was also voiced by the President of the European Central Bank, Christine Lagarde,” Aslam said in a report.

The biggest focus for markets has been the fate of U.S. economic stimulus given the heavy blow from pandemic social distancing restrictions and business closures.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 declined 0.4% to 23,567.04, while South Korea’s Kospi recouped earlier losses, gaining 0.5% to 2,358.41. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.7% to 6,184.60. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng inched 0.1% higher to 24,569.54 while the Shanghai Composite gained 0.5% to 3,328.10.

Stocks have been mostly pushing higher this month after giving back some of their big gains this year in a sudden September swoon. The benchmark S&P 500 has notched a gain in each of the past three weeks. Even so, trading often has been choppy from one day to the next, reflecting uncertainty over the timing of more stimulus for the economy.

Investors were also looking ahead to another busy week of corporate earnings reports. Across the S&P 500, analysts are expecting companies to report another drop in profits.

In energy trading, U.S. benchmark crude lost 10 cents to US$40.73 per barrel. Brent crude, the international standard, fell 15 cents to $42.47 a barrel.

The U.S. dollar inched up to 105.56 Japanese yen from 105.43 yen late Monday. The euro rose to $1.1776 from $1.1769.

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