Global stocks mixed…infrastructure vote in Senate
TOKYO (AP) – Global shares are mixed today. In early trading, France’s CAC 40 was little changed, while Germany’s DAX gained nearly 0.1%. Britain’s FTSE 100 lost 0.1%. In Asian markets, Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 closed 0.2% higher. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng recouped early losses to jump 1.2%, while the Shanghai Composite gained 1.0%. South Korea’s Kospi declined 0.5%. Wall Street is expected to open lower, with Dow and S&P futures both down less than 0.1%.
WASHINGTON (AP) – The Senate is on track to give final approval to its $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure plan. A growing coalition of Democrats and Republicans is preparing to lift the first phase of President Joe Biden’s rebuilding agenda to passage. Final Senate votes are expected around near midday today, with passage sending the bill to the House.
HONG KONG (AP) – Hong Kong’s leader is voicing support for legislation allowing retaliatory sanctions, after the U.S. and other Western governments punished city officials over the ongoing crackdown on democracy activists. Carrie Lam says the anti-foreign sanctions law should be adopted in Hong Kong via local legislation, rather than imposed by Beijing. China’s broad anti-sanctions law was imposed in June. Anyone hit with retaliatory sanctions could be subject to visa restrictions, having their assets seized and a ban on doing business with any Chinese company or individual in China.
BEIJING (AP) – A Chinese court has rejected a Canadian drug convict’s appeal of a death sentence in what appears to be an effort to increase pressure on Canada to release detained Huawei Technologies executive Meng Wanzhou. Robert Schellenberg was sentenced to 15 years in prison in November 2018 for drug smuggling. He was abruptly resentenced to death in January 2019 following the arrest of the Huawei chief financial officer. Canada is appealing to China to grant Schellenberg clemency.
TOKYO (AP) – Japanese technology company SoftBank’s fiscal first quarter earnings dropped 39% because of the absence of the cash benefit from the merger of Sprint, which boosted its profits a year ago. Tokyo-based SoftBank Group is reporting a 761.5 billion yen, or $6.9 billion, profit for April-June. Quarterly sales rose nearly 16% to about $13 billion. SoftBank had posted for the fiscal year that ended in March the biggest annual net profit for any company in Japanese history. But analysts say the value of SoftBank’s holdings has been declining. Its investment portfolio includes office-space sharing WeWork, Yahoo! Japan and Alibaba.