People walk past a bank electronic board showing the Hong Kong share index outside a Hong Kong local bank Thursday, March 28, 2019. Asian shares were mostly lower Thursday, following a slip on Wall Street, as investors watched the continuing trade talks between the U.S. and China.(AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

Global shares mixed as US, China set to resume trade talks

March 28, 2019 - 5:32 am

TOKYO (AP) — Global shares were mixed on Thursday as Chinese and U.S. trade negotiators prepared for the latest round of talks aimed at ending a tariffs war between the two biggest economies.

Britain's FTSE edged less than 0.1 percent lower to 7,194.19 as Prime Minister Theresa May made a final effort to save her European Union withdrawal deal after her promise to quit failed to win over lawmakers from Northern Ireland, who object out of concern their province would be treated differently from the rest of the United Kingdom.

Germany's DAX gained 0.4 percent to 11,460.74 and the CAC 40 in France also gained 0.4 percent, to 5,319.51. U.S. markets looked set for a steady start, with the future contract for the Dow Jones Industrial Average nearly unchanged at 25,659.00 and that for the Standard & Poor's 500 also almost flat at 2,810.10.

Markets seem to be taking the prolonged uncertainty over Brexit in stride.

With the countdown to Britain's departure from the EU looming on Friday and no Brexit deal on hand, the EU last week granted a delay. It said that if Parliament approves the proposed divorce deal this week, the U.K. will leave the EU on May 22. If not, the government has until April 12 to tell the 27 remaining EU countries what it plans to do: leave without a deal, cancel Brexit or propose a radically new path.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 lost 1.6 percent to finish at 21,033.76 and the Shanghai Composite index sank 0.9 percent to 2,994.94. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added nearly 0.7 percent at 6,176.10. South Korea's Kospi fell 0.8 percent to 2,128.10, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.2 percent to 28,775.21. Shares were mixed in Southeast Asia and fell in Taiwan.

Technology and health care companies drove a broad slide in U.S. stocks Wednesday, erasing some of the market's solid gains from a day earlier. The sell-off put the Dow Jones Industrial Average on track to end the month with a loss and marked the second drop for the benchmark S&P 500 index this week.

The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.36 percent, raising some fears about a possible recession within the coming year.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude fell 42 cents to $58.99 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It fell 0.9 percent to settle at $59.41 a barrel Wednesday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gave up 45 cents to $66.79 a barrel.

CURRENCIES: The dollar slipped to 110.37 yen from 110.51 yen. The euro rose to $1.1256 from $1.1244.


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