World shares mostly lower … France calls US withdrawal from tech tax talks ‘provocation’ …Bank of England to unveil another stimulus
BANGKOK (AP) – World shares are mostly lower today. European benchmarks lost ground, with Germany’s DAX down less than 0.1% while the CAC 40 in Paris gave up 0.4% Britain’s FTSE 100 lost 0.3%. In Asian trading, Japan’s Nikkei closed 0.5% lower and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong edged 0.1% lower. South Korea’s Kospi slipped 0.4%, but the Shanghai Composite index gained 0.1%. Wall Street futures are lower.
PARIS (AP) – France’s finance minister is calling the withdrawal of the Trump administration from negotiations on a major digital services tax a “provocation.” Bruno Le Maire made the comment today on France Inter, saying France will still implement the tax. Le Maire was referring to a letter in which U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told the finance ministers of France, Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom that he was suspending talks on the tax. The letter was first reported by the Financial Times. The countries have been discussing an international agreement on the way global taxes work.
HONG KONG (AP) – Chinese e-commerce firm JD.com’s shares gained 3.5% in its debut in Hong Kong today, after the firm raised $3.9 billion in a share sale. Its trading debut in Hong Kong coincided with its annual June 18 online shopping extravaganza. Like other e-commerce companies, JD.com has seen its sales accelerate due to the pandemic, as consumers shunned physical stores in favor of online shopping. JD.com’s shares initially jumped 6% on Thursday. A growing number of Chinese technology companies are choosing to list in Hong Kong as relations between the U.S. and China worsen.
LONDON (AP) – The Bank of England is set to unveil another big stimulus for the U.K. economy as it tries to limit the scale of the coronavirus recession. The central bank is expected today to join its counterparts around the world, including the U.S. Federal Reserve, in bolstering support measures following the initial radical responses to the economic threat of the pandemic. The meeting of the bank’s monetary policy committee is taking place in the wake of figures showing that the U.K. economy shrank by a fifth in April alone as a result of the country’s lockdown, which has seen many sectors shuttered.
UNDATED (AP) – Hong Kong Disneyland has reopened after a major drop in coronavirus cases in the Chinese territory. Advance reservations are required and only limited attendance is allowed at the park, one of the pillars of Hong Kong’s crucial tourism industry. Social distancing measures including avoiding mixing together different families are being implemented in lines, at restaurants, on rides and at shops, while cleaning and disinfecting will be increased. Visitors will have their temperatures checked at the entrance and have to wear masks at all times inside the park, except when eating and drinking.