Thursday, 3 January 2019

Markets mixed as Chinese manufacturing shrinks

Markets were mixed on Wednesday.

The S&P 500 edged up 0.1 percent but the STOXX Europe 600 fell 0.1 percent and the Shanghai Composite fell 1.1 percent.

Chinese stocks were hit by a report showing that the Caixin/Markit Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' index fell to 49.7 in December from 50.2 in November.

Gareth Nicholson, head of fixed income at Bank of Singapore, suggested that the data confirmed that the US-China "trade war has had an impact”.

Meanwhile, Joel Kulina, analyst at Wedbush Securities, noted that the post-Christmas “melt-up” markets experienced in recent days is being “unwound a bit” and suggested that “investors will adopt a more cautious approach to 2019”.

Still, many analysts remain optimistic for 2019 because negative years for stocks, as in 2018, “are usually followed by a strong bounce the next year”.

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