Global stocks drift as yuan stabilizes for a second day
Global stock markets drifted Friday as mainland China’s currency stabilized for a second day, easing uncertainty about its direction after an unexpected devaluation earlier in the week.
Europe started Friday on a positive note. The U. K.’ s FTSE 100 added 0.2 percent to 6,579.68 and Germany’s DAX rose 0.2 percent to 11,031.37. France’s CAC- 40 added 0.1 percent to 4,990.99. Futures showed that Wall Street was set for a lackluster day. Dow futures fell 0.1 percent while S& P futures declined 0.2 percent.
The U. S. dollar was buying 6.3901 yuan, little changed from the previous change after Zhang Xiaohu, a deputy governor at People’s Bank of China, said Thursday that there is “no basis for persistent and substantial devaluation.” Zhang said the yuan is close to “market levels” after two days of declines. The yuan fell about 3 percent this week, beginning its slide on Tuesday after a surprise change in exchange rate policy, which roiled global financial markets and caused Asian stocks and currencies to tumble. Beijing said the change was aimed at making the tightly controlled currency more market- oriented.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 finished 0.4 percent lower at 20,519.45 while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was down 0.1 percent at 23,991.03. China’s Shanghai Composite Index added 0.3 percent to 3,965.33 Australia’s S& P/ ASX 200 was down 0.6 percent to 5,356.50. Financial markets in South Korea were closed for a holiday. Southeast Asian markets finished mostly higher.
Safe- haven gold fetched US$ 1,118.45, compared to US$ 1,121.23 late Thursday. In other markets: — Wellington fell 0.72 percent, or 41.25 points, to 5,696.45.
— Jakarta ended points to 4,585.39.
— Singapore closed 0.73 percent, 22.47 points, higher at 3,114.25.
— Kuala Lumpur fell 1.53 percent, or 24.80 points, to close at 1,596.82.
— Bangkok added 0.70 percent, or 9.77 points, to 1,413.92
— Mumbai rose 1.88 percent, or 517.78 points, to 28,067.31 points.
flat, adding 1.141