Wall Street retreats from record levels as Apple weighs

Alicia Farmer
January 30, 2018

Lockheed Martin rose 2.3 per cent after the weapons supplier forecast higher 2018 earnings. Sony and Panasonic are down more than 1 percent each, while Mitsubishi Electric is declining 0.3 percent and Canon is losing 0.4 percent. Newcrest Mining declined 1.63 percent and Evolution Mining reversed early losses to edge up by 0.36 percent.

Data released earlier in the day showed that retail sales last month rose 3.6 percent compared to one year ago, above the 1.8 percent median projected rise, Reuters said.

The major miners are also mostly lower.

Over in Seoul, the Kospi edged lower by 0.1 percent after rising almost 1 percent to notch a record close in the previous session.

The 10-year Treasury note yield stretched its overnight surge above 2.7% and reached its highest since April 2014 after comments from a European Central Bank official added to expectations that central banks will reduce stimulus as the economic outlook improves.

ApplyDirect's shares are rising more than 9 percent after the recruitment technology company said it will participate in Google's Cloud Job Discovery beta program that is slated to go live in three months. Britain's FTSE 100 gave up 0.7 percent to 7,616.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng has been the best performer for the year so far with a rise of nearly 11 per cent, while Shanghai blue chips ran into profit-taking on Monday.

On the mainland, the Shanghai composite shed 0.26 percent and the Shenzhen composite slipped 0.19 percent in the morning.

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Heading into the final hour of trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 98.85 points, or 0.37 per cent, at 26,517.86. The rise in bond rates this year has been driven by concerns over higher inflation.

"The yield rise may have bumped off USA stocks from highs, but a correction was due after their recent gains".

The euro, whose strength had crimped stocks late last week, eased back from its highs, but Europe's STOXX 600 index edged 0.2 per cent, as investors held their breath for the results rush. As of Monday morning, 78 percent of S&P 500 companies that have announced results have topped earnings expectations, according to FactSet. Analysts expect the tech giant to report quarterly EPS of $3.83 on Thursday.

However, the biggest decliners were defensive sectors " utilities, real estate and telecoms slid as USA 10-year treasury yields hit their highest since 2014. The dollar index stood at 89.349 at 10:29 a.m. HK/SIN.

The euro was down 0.1% at $1.2367 after slipping overnight from a three-year peak of $1.2538.

Oil prices extended losses after being pressured by the dollar's bounce and rising United States crude output.

News that Apple Inc. will lower its production target for its iPhone X owing to the possibility that sales of the new model will fall short of the tech-giant's expectations weighed on tech issues here, particularly those linked to the US maker, market strategists here said. Brent crude futures shed 0.29 percent to settle at $69.26 per barrel in the last session. The move higher came after news that several investors, including Tencent, are preparing to buy a 14 percent stake in a commercial real estate unit of Dalian Wanda Group, Reuters reported. The company said the application proof of the unit's prospectus will be made available January 30.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.26 per cent, aiming for a 12th straight session of gains.

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