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SHARES MOSTLY LOWER IN ASIA AFTER WALL STREET RETREAT

Shares were mostly lower in Asia on Wednesday after Wall Street pumped the brakes on its recent rally, Elaine Kurtenbach reported for the Associated Press (AP) on August 12, 2020.

Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index edged higher while the Shanghai Composite sank 2%. Overnight, a late slide in big technology companies left indexes broadly lower on Wall Street, breaking a seven-day winning streak for the S&P 500. A discouraging lack of progress on talks over more economic aid for the US economy, coupled with worries over the coronavirus pandemic and tensions between the US and China, have prompted investors to sell and lock in profits from recent gains, analysts said.


“When you walk back the market’s expectations of an imminent fiscal deal, it is like poking the balloon with a straight pin as all semblance of near-term optimism gets immediately deflated,” Stephen Innes of AxiCorp. said in a commentary.


The Nikkei 225 gained 0.4% to 22,848.24, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng edged 0.2% lower to 24,845.57. In South Korea, the Kospi was flat, at 2,418.32. The Shanghai Composite index lost 66 points to 3,273.75. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 declined 0.5% to 6,107.20. Shares fell in Taiwan, India and most of Southeast Asia. Overnight’s reversal left the S&P 500 with a 0.8% loss, at 3,333.69. Drops for big-name technology stocks like Apple and Microsoft and losses in health care and communications stocks outweighed gains in financial, industrial and energy companies.


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