Asian stocks falter as global growth fears temper tech boost By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Security guard with a face mask walks past the Bund Financial Bull Statue on the Bund in Shanghai

By Andrew Galbraith and Suzanne Barlyn

(Reuters) – Asian stocks fluctuated in a troubled session on Friday as miserable US economic data and rising global COVID-19 cases weighed on sentiment despite strong US tech gains and signs of a recovery in manufacturing in China and Japan .

The US dollar was also set for the worst month in ten years as the Fed will maintain its ultra-loose monetary policy for years to come.

US GDP plummeted in the second quarter at an annual rate of 32.9%, the lowest decline in existence, while unemployment claims rose last week, which contributed to signs of a slowdown in the economic recovery.

These numbers overshadowed positive production data from China and Japan. China's official PMI (Purchasing Manager & # 39; s Index) data showed factory activity grew faster for five consecutive months in July and resisted expectations of a slowdown, while Japan's industrial output fell four months in June.

"We are seeing some tentative signs of an improvement in global trade flows as economies reopen, but the overhang from recessive conditions in developed countries and rising infection rates are currently a focus for investors," said Ryan Felsman, senior economist at CommSec in Sydney.

After the surge in early trading, MSCI's broadest index of Asian stocks outside of Japan fell late in the morning. It was last down 0.22%.

Australian stocks () fell 1.85% during the month and Seoul's Kospi () fell 0.2%. Japanese Nikkei () fell 1.87% as a stronger yen weighed on exporters.

Chinese blue chips () recently fell 0.29% in a choppy session.

But futures firmly pointed to a positive opening on Wall Street on Friday after Apple (O :), Amazon (O :), Facebook (O 🙂 and Alphabet (O 🙂 reported quarterly earnings for the first time on the same day. All Wall Street estimates.

"Everyone has turned off the lights on their winning numbers," said Ray Attrill, strategist at the National Australia Bank. "It looks like it's going to be a pretty risky run into the weekend."

The E-mini futures for the S & P 500 rose 0.38%.

"Stay-at-home" winners, given that millions of Americans have been instructed indoors to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. The stocks of the largest US technology companies have reached record highs in the past few months as the coronavirus pandemic has brought the economy into the sharpest decline since the Great Depression.

US stock markets, oil prices and the dollar weakened Thursday as the new data highlighted the deep economic effects of the corona virus and US President Donald Trump raised the possibility of a delay in the November election.

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average () fell 225.92 points or 0.85% to 26,313.65, the S&P 500 () lost 12.22 points or 0.38% to 3,246.22 and the Nasdaq Composite () rose 44.87 points, or 0.43%, to 10,587.81.

On the foreign exchange market, the dollar fell 0.39% against the yen to 104.31, while the euro rose 0.4% and bought USD 1.1889.

The greenback remains on track for the worst month in ten years, falling 0.12% to 92.679.

Crude recovered from an overnight slump, with the global benchmark rising 0.54% to 43.17 a barrel. added 0.3% to $ 40.04 a barrel.

Gold also rose higher, with {{68 | Spot Gogold was traded 0.48% higher at $ 1,968.84 an ounce, just below record highs.

The US benchmark returned 0.525% compared to a US closing price of 0.541% on Thursday. The two-year return was 0.1113% compared to a US closing price of 0.121%.

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