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Jan. 2, 2020, 11:30 p.m. EST

Asian markets mixed in aftermath of Iran general’s death

Oil stocks surge as global uncertainty rises after U.S. airstrike

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By Associated Press and Marketwatch


Associated Press
Currency traders watch monitors at the foreign exchange dealing room of the KEB Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul, South Korea, on Friday.

Asian stocks were mixed Friday and oil prices surged after an Iranian general was killed by U.S. forces in Iraq.

Benchmarks in Shanghai and Hong Kong declined. Australia and some Southeast Asian markets advanced. Japanese markets were closed.

News that Gen. Qassem Soleimani, head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, was killed in an air attack at the Baghdad international airport prompted expectations of Iranian retaliation against U.S. and Israeli targets.

“A big fat dollop of geopolitical uncertainty has landed on investors desks,” said Jeffrey Halley of Oanda in a report.

Overnight, Wall Street rose to new records, boosted by technology stocks.

Investors were encouraged by expectations of stronger global economic growth in 2020 and the planned signing of an interim U.S.-Chinese trade agreement.

The Shanghai Composite Index /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP +0.31%   shed 0.3% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI -1.09%   lost 0.2%. Taiwan /zigman2/quotes/210597977/delayed TW:Y9999 -0.33%   and Singapore /zigman2/quotes/210597985/delayed SG:STI -0.55%   also declined.

Seoul’s Kospi /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 -1.49%   was unchanged and Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO -0.33%  gained 0.7%.

Singapore was down while markets in Malaysia /zigman2/quotes/210598052/delayed MY:FBMKLCI -0.25%   and Indonesia /zigman2/quotes/210597981/delayed ID:JAKIDX -1.01%  , both oil producers, gained.

Among individual stocks, oil companies PetroChina /zigman2/quotes/204979431/delayed HK:857 -1.17%   and CNOOC /zigman2/quotes/203421416/delayed HK:883 -0.33%   surged in Hong Kong, while property developers such as Country Garden /zigman2/quotes/201681083/delayed HK:2007 -1.31%   and China Overseas Land Investment /zigman2/quotes/205731176/delayed HK:688 -2.34%   fell. Samsung /zigman2/quotes/209800866/delayed KR:005930 -1.33%   edged up in South Korea, while Beach Energy /zigman2/quotes/200513631/delayed AU:BPT -3.24%   and Oil Search /zigman2/quotes/204702973/delayed AU:OSH -0.47%   gained in Australia.

There was no immediate indication how Iran would respond to Soleimani’s death but Tehran has in recent months seized oil tankers and shot down a U.S. military drone.

Washington blames Iran for attacks on tankers and a September assault on Saudi Arabia’s oil industry that temporarily cut its production by half.

Brent crude  , used to price international oil, was up $1.93 at $68.18 per barrel in London after temporarily jumping nearly $3. The contract gained 25 cents on Thursday to close at $66.25.

Benchmark U.S. crude   was up $1.69 at $62.87 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It lost 12 cents the previous day to close at $61.18.

On Wall Street, the benchmark S&P 500 index /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -1.05%   climbed 0.8% to 3,257.85. The Dow Jones Industrial Average /zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime DJIA -0.78%   rose 1.2% to 28,868.80. The Nasdaq composite /zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime COMP -1.79%   gained 1.3% to 9,092.19.

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq closed out the year Tuesday with their best annual performance since 2013.

Investors are waiting for Washington and Beijing to formalize a trade deal that has helped ease market jitters over the 18-month-old dispute between the world’s two biggest economies.

Washington and Beijing announced a “Phase 1” pact that calls for the U.S. to reduce tariffs and China to buy larger quantities of U.S. farm products.

This week, President Donald Trump tweeted that he will sign the initial trade deal with China at the White House this month.

/zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed
CN : China: Shanghai
3,039.67
+9.52 +0.31%
Volume: 36.46B
Feb. 21, 2020 3:01p
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/zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed
HK : Hong Kong Exchange
27,308.81
-300.35 -1.09%
Volume: 1.77M
Feb. 21, 2020 4:08p
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/zigman2/quotes/210597977/delayed
TW : Taiwan Stock Exchange
11,686.35
-38.74 -0.33%
Volume: 0.00
Feb. 21, 2020 1:33p
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/zigman2/quotes/210597985/delayed
SG : Singapore: SGX
3,181.03
-17.65 -0.55%
Volume: 0.00
Feb. 21, 2020 5:20p
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/zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed
KR : Korea Exchange
2,162.84
-32.66 -1.49%
Volume: 635,474
Feb. 21, 2020 3:33p
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/zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed
AU : S&P ASX
7,139.00
-23.50 -0.33%
Volume: 1.07M
Feb. 21, 2020 5:17p
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/zigman2/quotes/210598052/delayed
MY : Malaysia
1,531.20
-3.78 -0.25%
Volume: 0.00
Feb. 21, 2020 5:05p
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/zigman2/quotes/210597981/delayed
ID : Indonesia Stock Exchange
5,882.26
-60.23 -1.01%
Volume: 0.00
Feb. 21, 2020 4:00p
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/zigman2/quotes/204979431/delayed
HK : Hong Kong
HK$ 3.38
-0.04 -1.17%
Volume: 241.87M
Feb. 21, 2020 4:08p
P/E Ratio
12.97
Dividend Yield
4.66%
Market Cap
HK$625.93 billion
Rev. per Employee
HK$5.32M
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/zigman2/quotes/203421416/delayed
HK : Hong Kong
HK$ 12.18
-0.04 -0.33%
Volume: 58.19M
Feb. 21, 2020 4:08p
P/E Ratio
8.23
Dividend Yield
5.99%
Market Cap
HK$545.59 billion
Rev. per Employee
HK$13.96M
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/zigman2/quotes/201681083/delayed
HK : Hong Kong
HK$ 10.58
-0.14 -1.31%
Volume: 18.22M
Feb. 21, 2020 4:08p
P/E Ratio
5.39
Dividend Yield
5.65%
Market Cap
HK$231.14 billion
Rev. per Employee
HK$3.60M
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/205731176/delayed
HK : Hong Kong
HK$ 27.10
-0.65 -2.34%
Volume: 19.31M
Feb. 21, 2020 4:08p
P/E Ratio
6.37
Dividend Yield
3.51%
Market Cap
HK$296.91 billion
Rev. per Employee
HK$30.79M
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/zigman2/quotes/209800866/delayed
KR : S. Korea: KRX
59,200.00
-800.00 -1.33%
Volume: 13.78M
Feb. 21, 2020 3:30p
P/E Ratio
16.34
Dividend Yield
2.39%
Market Cap
₩407560.00 billion
Rev. per Employee
N/A
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/zigman2/quotes/200513631/delayed
AU : Australia: Sydney
$ 2.09
-0.07 -3.24%
Volume: 7.81M
Feb. 21, 2020 4:10p
P/E Ratio
8.34
Dividend Yield
0.96%
Market Cap
$4.93 billion
Rev. per Employee
N/A
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/zigman2/quotes/204702973/delayed
AU : Australia: Sydney
$ 6.35
-0.03 -0.47%
Volume: 4.47M
Feb. 21, 2020 4:10p
P/E Ratio
16.43
Dividend Yield
3.06%
Market Cap
$9.68 billion
Rev. per Employee
$1.46M
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/zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime
US : S&P US
3,337.75
-35.48 -1.05%
Volume: 2.12B
Feb. 21, 2020 5:16p
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/zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime
US : Dow Jones Global
28,992.41
-227.57 -0.78%
Volume: 313.44M
Feb. 21, 2020 5:16p
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/zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime
US : U.S.: Nasdaq
9,576.59
-174.37 -1.79%
Volume: 2.45M
Feb. 21, 2020 5:16p
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