Global stocks mixed as Clinton, Trump debate

BEIJING, China – Global stocks were mixed Monday as traders watched the second U.S. presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, with Japanese and Hong Kong markets closed for holidays.

KEEPING SCORE: In early trading, London’s FTSE 100 index was off 0.2 per cent at 7,028.39 and France’s CAC 40 shed 0.2 per cent to 4,442.54. Germany’s DAX lost 0.1 per cent to 10,484.51. On Friday, the FTSE 100 rose 0.6 per cent while the DAX and CAC 40 both lost 0.7 per cent. On Wall Street, the future for the Dow Jones industrial average was up 0.3 per cent and for the Standard & Poor’s 500 rose 0.1 per cent. On Friday, the Dow fell 0.2 per cent, the S&P lost 0.3 per cent and the Nasdaq composite also declined 0.3 per cent.

ASIA’S DAY: The Shanghai Composite Index gained 1.4 per cent to 3,048.14 and India’s Sensex added 0.2 per cent to 28,115.88. Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 advanced 0.1 per cent to 5,475.40 and Seoul’s Kospi rose 0.1 per cent to 2,056.82. Benchmarks in New Zealand and Southeast Asia declined.

CLINTON VS TRUMP: Investors were watching the second debate between Clinton and Trump for signs of whether Trump, who has called for curbs on trade and immigration, can remain a viable candidate following controversy over his comments about women. “The issue for markets is the growing defection from Republican ranks against Donald Trump and the growing calls for him to step down,” Angus Nicholson of IG said in a report. “It’s not entirely clear if Trump even could be replaced at this point, and he stated he would not be stepping down over the weekend. But the risk of Trump being replaced with another candidate adds a new element of uncertainty for markets.”

WALL STREET: U.S. stocks ended lower Friday, giving the market its first weekly decline in a month. Real estate and phone companies extended declines. Once favoured by investors for their relative stability and steady dividends, they have become less attractive at the prospect of higher interest rates. Real estate companies lost 5 per cent during the week, and phone companies slumped 3.8 per cent.

U.S. JOBS: The government reported that employers hired last month at a slower pace than forecast, but not slow enough to signal the economy is in trouble and cause the Federal Reserve to hold off on raising interest rates this year. The data showed U.S. employers added 156,000 jobs last month. Job growth has averaged 178,000 a month so far this year, down from last year’s pace of 229,000. Most investors expect the Fed to raise rates in December after holding them near zero since 2008. The latest hiring “remains good enough to employ the growing population,” Ric Spooner of CMC Markets said in a report. “If your view is that this is a good enough scenario to allow the Fed to lift rates again this year, there was nothing in Friday’s data to change that position.”

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude tumbled 24 cents to $49.57 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 63 cents on Friday to close at $49.81. Brent crude, used to price international oils, fell 28 cents to $51.65 in London. The contract lost 58 cents the previous session to close at $51.93.

CURRENCY: The dollar rose to 103.17 yen from Friday’s 102.89 yen. The euro declined to $1.1182 from $1.1201.