Global stocks mostly higher as markets eye China meeting


TOKYO (AP) — Global stocks were mostly higher Monday as investors kept their eyes on a week-long Communist Party congress…

TOKYO (AP) — Global stocks were mostly higher Monday as investors eyed a week-long Communist Party congress in China.

France’s CAC 40 added 0.5% in early trading to 5,961.27. Germany’s DAX gained 0.5% to 12,498.72. Britain’s FTSE 100 rose 0.5% to 6,894.84. The Dow Industrial futures rose 0.7%, while the S&P 500 contract gained 0.9%.

Britain’s new Treasury chief was due to announce details of his fiscal and spending plans on Monday, two weeks ahead of schedule, in a bid to calm markets hurt by the government’s economic policies.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt was expected to abandon more of the measures announced by the government of Prime Minister Liz Truss on September 23. Since then, the prime minister’s libertarian economic policies have triggered a financial crisis, emergency central bank intervention, multiple U-Turns, and the firing of her chief finance officer.

In Asia, the meeting of China’s ruling Communist Party opened on Sunday and Xi Jinping is expected to reappoint himself as leader for the next five years. Analysts expect the meeting to reassert Xi’s grip on power and stronger state control over the economy. They expect no changes to Beijing’s “zero COVID policy.”

“The latest updates from China’s Party Congress are being scrutinized, with the emphasis on technological advancement and national security seemingly raised as high priorities for China’s long-term direction. Further decoupling from US technology seems to be the story,” Yeap Jun Rong, market strategist at IG in Singapore, said in a comment.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 index fell 1.2% to end at 26,775.79. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 1.4% to 6,664.40. South Korea’s Kospi recovered to gain 0.3% to 2,219.71. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.5% to 16,662.19, while the Shanghai Composite rose 0.4% to 3,084.94. In Mumbai, the Sensex gained 0.8%.

In currency trading, the US dollar rose to 148.64 Japanese yen from 148.63 yen. That’s a nearly 32-year low for the yen against the dollar.

Clifford Bennett, chief economist at ACY Securities, noted that the US dollar is likely to continue rising as interest rates rise to offset inflation. That is a difficulty for countries facing sharp increases in import costs and debt payments.

“The outlook is bleak. The economic horizon is dark,” he said of the US economy. “The US dollar will continue to strengthen for the time being, particularly against other Western currencies.”

The euro cost 97.47 cents, compared to 97.21 cents.

Japan’s industrial production for August showed moderate signs of improvement, the government said. Industrial production increased 3.4% from the previous month and 5.8% from a year earlier, according to data from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry published on Monday.

Inflation concerns, while cooling in some parts of the economy around the world, remain broad. A report last week showing U.S. consumer inflation expectations was another sign that the Federal Reserve may continue to aggressively raise interest rates, even though that strategy raises the risks of a recession.

The Fed has already raised its benchmark interest rate five times this year, with the last three hikes by three-quarters of a percentage point. Wall Street expects another three-quarter percentage point hike at its next meeting in November.

In energy trading, benchmark US crude rose 95 cents to $86.56 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. US crude prices fell 3.9% on Friday. Brent crude, the international standard, rose $1.05 to $92.68 a barrel.


Yuri Kageyama is on Twitter https://twitter.com/yurikageyama

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