Asian stocks mixed, oil prices rise above $115

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Asian stocks were mixed on Tuesday after reports showed China’s manufacturing slowdown is moderating as anti-virus measures on businesses in Shanghai and Beijing ease.

U.S. futures rose slightly after markets closed in New York on Monday for Memorial Day. European stocks rose on Monday.

Oil prices were trading above $115 a barrel following an agreement by European Union leaders to embargo on most Russian oil imports into the bloc by the end of the year.

The pact, part of new sanctions against Moscow, was hammered out at a summit aimed at helping Ukraine with a long-delayed new financial support package. The embargo covers Russian oil transported by sea, allowing a temporary exemption for imports delivered by pipeline. This was crucial in bringing landlocked Hungary on board a decision that required consensus.

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Benchmark U.S. crude oil gained $2.77 to $117.84 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It added 98 cents to $115.07 a barrel on Monday.

Brent crude, used as a pricing basis for international trade, advanced 76 cents to $118.38 a barrel.

China’s easing of anti-virus restrictions on businesses in Shanghai and Beijing has raised hopes of stronger growth in the world’s second-largest economy.

An official survey of factory activity showed a recovery in May, although still below the 50 level, indicating expansion on a scale of up to 100. The main Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index, or PMI, rose to 49.6 from 47.4 in April.

“PMIs are likely underestimating the magnitude of the recovery this month given that surveys mostly took place before most restrictions were eased in Shanghai,” Capital Economics’ Sheana Yue said in a statement. report. weeks will reveal a stronger recovery.”

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More factories, stores and other businesses are cleared to reopen this week in Shanghai and the Chinese capital, Beijing, after authorities declared the outbreaks under control. The Shanghai city government has promised rent and tax cuts, faster approvals for construction projects and more subsidies for the purchase of electric cars.

The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.2% to 3,154.44 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng edged up 0.1% to 21,144.72.

Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 rose 0.1% to 27,404.14, while Seoul’s Kospi gained 0.1% to 2,672.33.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.2% to 7,268.80. Shares also fell in Taiwan.

Futures for Wall Street’s S&P 500 index were 0.3% higher after Friday’s benchmark finished up 6.6% for the week after the surge lowered inflation.

Future Dow Jones Industrial Average futures rose 0.1%.

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Investors were relieved after Commerce Department data showed inflation in the United States, prompting the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates, decelerated to 6.3% more than a year earlier in April, its first drop in 17 months.

But concerns remain about whether the Fed can control inflation, which is at its highest level in four decades, without tipping the world’s largest economy into recession.

Crude oil prices have risen 60% this year on fears of supply disruptions from Russia, the world’s second largest exporter. Wheat prices have increased by about 50% and corn prices have increased by 30%.

The dollar rose to 128.09 Japanese yen from 127.55 yen on Monday night. The euro fell to $1.0747 from $1.0778.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.


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