Global stocks mixed…EU upbeat over economic growth
BEIJING (AP) – Global stock markets are mixed today after Wall Street declined on weaker U.S. services activity. In early trading, the FTSE 100 in London opened 0.5% higher. Frankfurt’s DAX gained 0.7%, while the CAC 40 in Paris added 0.3%. In Asian trading, Tokyo’s Nikkei closed 1% lower and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong lost 0.4%. The Shanghai Composite Index advanced 0.7%, the Kospi in Seoul retreated 0.6%. On Wall Street, Dow and S&P 500 futures are mixed.
BRUSSELS (AP) – The European Commission is upbeat about economies rebounding from coronavirus restrictions. It says the economies of the 27 EU countries are likely to expand by 4.8% this year. The same growth is expected for the 19 countries using the euro single currency. That’s around half a percentage point higher than predicted in May. But the EU’s executive branch is warning that the impact of COVID-19 variants could pose a risk. Brussels is also concerned about rising inflation.
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) – Australia’s treasurer says his country will always keep its national interests ahead of economic interests in its troubled relationship with China. The comments from Treasurer Josh Frydenberg came after a White House official predicted long-term Sino-Australian tensions. Frydenberg says China remains a “very important economic partner” despite bilateral disputes that had disrupted tens of billions of dollars in trade in Australian commodities including coal, wine, beef, barley, wood and lobsters. Nevertheless, he says Australia “will not put economic interests first.”
BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) – China’s most popular social media service has deleted accounts on LGBT topics run by university students and nongovernment groups, prompting concern the ruling Communist Party is tightening control over gay and lesbian content. The founder of an LGBT group says WeChat sent account holders a notice that they violated rules but gave no details. She says at least dozens of accounts were shut down, all at about 10 p.m. on Tuesday. It isn’t clear whether the step was ordered by Chinese authorities.
TOKYO (AP) – Nissan Chief Executive Makoto Uchida has told a Japanese court that the company’s former chairman, Carlos Ghosn (gohn), had held too much power, failed to listen to others, and stayed on for too long. Uchida testified today that those factors led to financial misconduct charges for Ghosn. Nissan as a corporate entity is standing trial on charges of having falsified securities reports in under-reporting Ghosn’s compensation. It does not contest the charges, But Ghosn says he is innocent. He was arrested in 2018, but fled to Lebanon while out on bail. Greg Kelly, a former executive vice president at Nissan, also is on trial on charges of failing to fully report Ghosn’s compensation.