By Associated Press
BEIJING — Asian stock markets advanced Wednesday after Wall Street sank on weak U.S. housing sales and a profit warning by a prominent social media brand.
The Nikkei 225 /zigman2/quotes/210597971/delayed JP:NIK -1.73% in Tokyo inched 0.1% higher. The Shanghai Composite Index /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP -0.32% advanced 0.6% while the Hang Seng /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI -0.62% in Hong Kong rose about as much.
The Kospi /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 -1.17% in Seoul rose 0.8% and Sydney’s S&P/ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO -0.43% gained 0.6%. Benchmark indexes in New Zealand /zigman2/quotes/211587880/delayed NZ:NZ50GR -1.06% , Singapore /zigman2/quotes/210597985/delayed SG:STI -0.21% and Indonesia /zigman2/quotes/210597981/delayed ID:JAKIDX -1.70% declined while Taiwan /zigman2/quotes/210597977/delayed TW:Y9999 -3.26% advanced.
Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index lost 0.8% after the profit warning Tuesday by Snapchat’s parent company spooked investors into dumping social media stocks. Construction stocks fell after U.S. home sales plunged in April.
“The overall mood in equity markets remains largely downbeat,” said Jun Rong Yeap of IG in a report.
Investors are on edge about the impact of interest rate hikes in the United States and other Western economies to cool surging inflation, as well as Russia’s war on Ukraine and a Chinese economic slowdown.
On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve is due to give insight into its decision-making by releasing minutes of its latest policy meeting.
The S&P is down 18% from its Jan. 3 high, putting it on the brink of a bear market, or a 20% decline from the previous top.
The Nasdaq composite /zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime COMP +0.90% , dominated by tech stocks, slide 2.3% to 11,264.45 after the social media selloff. Snap /zigman2/quotes/205087158/composite SNAP +0.30% plummeted 43.1%, its biggest single-day drop ever. Facebook parent Meta slumped 7.6%. Google’s parent Alphabet /zigman2/quotes/202490156/composite GOOGL -0.21% fell 5.1%.
In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude rose $1.28 to $111.05 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 52 cents on Tuesday to $109.77. Brent crude , the price basis for international oil trading, advanced $1.19 to $111.88 per barrel in London. It rose 14 cents the previous session to $113.56.
The dollar /zigman2/quotes/210561789/realtime/sampled USDJPY -0.3471% gained to 127.05 yen from Tuesday’s 126.82 yen.