Stocks Turn Lower Amid Earnings Reports, Brexit Delay

BEIJING (AP) — Global markets mostly dipped Wednesday after more corporate earnings reports weighed and as Brexit seemed due to be delayed again, extending uncertainty.

In Europe, Germany’s DAX edged down almost 0.1% to 12,752 while France’s CAC 40 shed 0.6% to 5,623. London’s FTSE 100 rose 0.3% to 7,234 after British lawmakers approved a Brexit deal but rejected fast-tracking it through parliament, raising the prospect of another delay to the Oct. 31 Brexit date.

On Wall Street, futures for the benchmark Standard & Poor’s 500 index was down 0.3% while the Dow futures were down 0.4%.

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Investor sentiment has been dented by a series of mixed earnings from McDonald’s, Procter & Gamble and other big U.S. companies. That blunted investor optimism that had been fed by hopes for progress in settling a damaging U.S.-Chinese tariff war.

In Europe, the president of the European Council, Donald Tusk, said he would recommend the other 27 nations in the trade bloc grant Britain’s request for an extension to the Brexit deadline. The date could be pushed back to the end of January but the country could also face a general election in that time, raising some new uncertainties around the whole process.

Meanwhile, more company results are likely to drive markets. Caterpillar said Wednesday that a slowing global economy is taking a toll on its business, and it cut its outlook for the year after profits and revenue slid in the third quarter.

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Boeing will also announce results later in the day.

Analysts came into this earnings season expecting profits to decline overall for companies in the S&P 500. But with about 15% of companies in the index reporting so far, results have been unexpectedly positive.

Earnings growth fell slightly in the first and second quarters, according to data from FactSet, which was better than Wall Street’s expectation at the start of those reporting seasons.

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In Asia, the Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.4% to 2,941.62 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 0.8% to 26,566.73. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 added 0.3% to 22,625.38.

Seoul’s Kospi declined 0.4% to 2,080.62 and Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 was unchanged at 6,673.10. India’s Sensex rose 0.2% to 39,058.83.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude lost 53 cents to $53.94 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract gained $1.97 on Tuesday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, retreated 45 cents to $59.25 per barrel in London. It rose $1.74 the previous session.

CURRENCY: The dollar was stable at 108.45 yen, while the euro retreated to $1.1119 from Tuesday’s $1.1127.


By AP reporter Joe McDonald


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