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Asia Pacific Market: Stocks stuck in the red on US political woes, Spain terror attack
Aug 18,2017

Asia Pacific share market closed down on Friday, 18 August 2017, as a fatal terrorist attack in Barcelona, Spain, turned investors risk averse and opt for safe havens. Meanwhile, ongoing concerns about the future course of the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump and his ability to deliver promised policies continued to weigh on the market too.

Market sentiment cooled following sharp declines in global markets overnight on the Barcelona vehicle attack, which left about a dozen people killed and scores of others injured.

Confidence was shaken after a van mowed through crowds of tourists in Barcelona on Thursday, 17 August 2017, killing at least 13 people and injuring more than 100 in an attack authorities were treating as terrorism. More were hurt in a second incident in the resort town of Cambrils, which the government said was connected to the Barcelona attack. Spanish police said they had killed four attackers in a shootout south of the city overnight.

The news from Spain added to already downbeat sentiment amid growing doubts about U.S. President Donald Trumps ability to push through with his promised fiscal stimulus following rumors that Gary Cohn, director of the National Economic Council, will quit. The White House denied the speculation. With the U.S. political turmoil, investors were concerned that (Trumps) economic agenda including tax cuts would be delayed further and they even doubted whether such policies could be realized.

US stocks tumbled overnight as the broader market appeared to be fretting about a number of bearish factors, including a record-setting market that has been viewed as too rich and due for a pullback, concerns about the health of the economy and the Federal Reserves comfort in normalizing interest rates amid levels of inflation that have run below their 2% target, considered indicative of a normally functioning economy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 274 points, or 1.2%, lower at 21,750, as the broader stock market faced its biggest selloff since last weeks North Korea-fueled jitters. The S&P 500 index meanwhile, ended down 1.5% at 2,430 and the Nasdaq Composite Index shed 1.9% at 6,221.

Concerns have grown over Trumps ability to push through his economic goals such as tax cuts and infrastructure spending following the exodus of executives from two prominent business councils in reaction to his response to clashes last weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia. Trump on Thursday, 17 August 2017, again decried the removal of pro-slavery Civil War Confederacy monuments, which have fuelled US racial tensions, stoking worries that some of his key policy staffers and aides may quit.

Among Asian bourses

Australia Stocks stuck in the red

Australian equity market finished down for second straight session, amid broadbased losses following hefty declines on Wall Street overnight on political uncertainty and the Barcelona terror attack. The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.6% or 32.11 points to 5,747.1 at the close of trade.

Financial stocks were the biggest drag on mirroring a reflection of the sell-off we saw in the United States last night, with the Big Four banks - Westpac, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, National Australia Bank and Australia and New Zealand Banking Group down between 0.92% and 1.8%. Insurer QBE had fallen another 3.04% to A$10.83, following Thursdays 7.1% decline. The banks also came under pressure from a proposal by the government to strengthen its money laundering laws days after accusations against Commonwealth Bank of serious and systemic breaches of money laundering laws.

Mining shares were also sharply weaker after aluminium, copper and other base metals edged down from multi-year peaks overnight due to profit-booking and after Shanghai metals futures opened lower across the board. Mining giants BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto fell 1.72% and 0.93%, respectively, while gold miner Newcrest Mining fell 0.85%.

Link Groups shares fell 2.92% to A$7.66 after it revealed it had more than doubled its full-year net profit to A$84.6 million in its sophomore earnings report following its entry to the ASX in October, 2015.

Kogan.coms shares soared 6.25% to A$2.55 after the online consumer goods retailer said its net profit had more than quadrupled to A$3.7 million with an expanded product range.

Primary Health Care shares rose 0.57% to A$3.55, after declaring a full-year loss of A$517 million, following a writedown in the value of its medical centres business.

Nikkei extends losing streak

The Japan share market finished down for third second session, due to the yens strengthening against the dollar amid a risk-averse mood amid rising concerns over the fate of US President Donald Trumps economic agenda and fatal terrorist attack in Barcelona, Spain. With the exception of the marine transportation and food sector, all industry categories closed in negative territory, with iron and steel, insurance and nonferrous metal-linked stocks comprising the days biggest decliners. The Nikkei 225 average fell 232.22 points, or 1.18%, to 19,470.41, its lowest finish since May 2. The Topix, including all first-section issues, closed down 17.46 points, or 1.08%, at 1,597.36. Falling issues far outnumbered rising ones 1,672 to 279 in the TSEs first section, while 72 issues were unchanged. Volume rose to 1.671 billion shares from 1.436 billion shares on Thursday.

The stronger yen battered automakers Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Subaru, camera maker Canon, electronics maker Panasonic and technology firm Kyocera. Megabank groups Mitsubishi UFJ, Sumitomo Mitsui and Mizuho, insurers Dai-ichi Life and Sompo Holdings and brokerage firms Nomura and Daiwa met with selling after their U.S. peers fared poorly in New York trading on Thursday.

By contrast, brewers Asahi Group and Kirin as well as Japan Tobacco, which makes beverage in addition to cigarettes, attracted purchases. Also on the plus side were semiconductor-related Tokyo Electron and smartphone game developer KLab.

China Market closed steady

The Mainland China equity market ended virtually flat, with investor optimism over strong corporate earnings and economic fundamentals offsetting some pressure to take profits from recent gains. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index ended 0.01% higher, or 0.29 points, at 3,268.72, while the Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on Chinas second exchange, dipped 0.37%, or 7.13 points, to 1,902.25. The blue-chip CSI300 index tacked on 0.1%, to 3,725.09 points. The blue-chip CSI300 index tacked on 0.1%, to 3,725.09 points, while the Shanghai Composite Index was unchanged at 3,269.24 points.

China Nuclear Engineering Corp continued to build on its recent rises, jumping the daily limit of 10% to bring its weekly gains to 24.5%. On Wednesday, the company said that newly signed contracts in the first seven months increased 17.2% from the previous year.

Aluminum Corp of China trimmed its recent gains to end down 4.4% on Friday as investors locked in recent gains. The shares of Chinas largest aluminium producer fell despite it announcing that first-half net profit rose more than tenfold year-on-year, driven by high aluminium prices.

Hong Kong Stocks join global sell-off

The Hong Kong stock market finished softer, as risk sentiments dampened on worries about political turmoil in the US and a terrorist attack in Spain. The Hang Seng Index lost 1.08%, or 296.65 points, to 27,047.57 while the H-shares index declined 1.00%, or 107.77 points, to 10,693.65 points. Turnover stood at HK$84.48 billion.

Tech stocks declined on profit booking on following selloff in tech shares in the US market. Chinese online giant Tencent led the losses, declining 1.34% to HK$325. Lenovo Group, Chinas largest personal computer maker, lost 3.39% to HK$4.56 after it posted a surprise first-quarter loss of US$72 million on Thursday night, citing higher costs and a sluggish PC market.

Financial stocks remained in negative territory, with banks and insurers suffering the biggest losses. Shares of HSBC dropped 1.07% to HK$73.80 while ICBC lost 2.14% to HK$5.48. China Taiping fell 1.90% to HK$23.30 and China Life was down 1.28% to HK$23.15. Ping An Insurance rose 1.43% to HK$60.20, after posting a 6.5% increase in first-half profit.

Cathay Pacific advanced 1.70% to HK$12.00. Goldman Sachs upgraded the Hong Kongs flagship carrier stock to a Buy and raised its target price to HK$14.6. The investment bank expected passenger demand to improve due to better economic conditions in mainland China and Hong Kong. Credit Suisse upgraded the airlines rating to neutral from underperform and increased the target price to HK$11.3.

India Shares succumb to broader selling pressure

Key benchmark indices mirrored decline in global stock markets on rising doubts about US President Donald Trumps ability to deliver his economic agenda. The barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, fell 270.78 points or 0.85% to settle at 31,524.68. The Nifty 50 index fell 66.75 points or 0.67% to settle at 9,837.40.

IT shares were mixed. MphasiS (up 1.78%), TCS (up 1.32%), HCL Technologies (up 0.97%), Tech Mahindra (up 0.74%) and Persistent Systems (up 0.57%), edged higher. Wipro (down 0.21%), Hexaware Technologies (down 1.51%), MindTree (down 2.03%) and Oracle Financial Services Software (down 2.85%), edged lower.

IT major Infosys fell 9.60% to Rs 923.10. Vishal Sikka has resigned as managing director and chief executive officer of Infosys. The board has accepted his resignation with immediate effect, the IT major said in a statement issued during trading hours today, 18 August 2017. Infosys said U.B. Pravin Rao, its chief operating officer, has been named as interim managing director and chief executive.

Telecom stocks were in demand. Reliance Communications (up 4.31%), Bharti Airtel (up 1.21%), Idea Cellular (up 0.95%) and Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) (up 0.44%), edged higher. MTNL fell 1.89%. Telecom tower infrastructure provider Bharti Infratel rose 4.16% to Rs 394.80.

Low-cost air carrier InterGlobe Aviation fell 0.49% to Rs 1,270.30 as the stock turned ex-dividend today, 18 August 2017, for dividend of Rs 34 per share for the year ended 31 March 2017. Before turning ex-dividend, the stock offered a dividend yield of 2.59% based on the closing price of Rs 1,310.50 on BSE yesterday, 17 August 2017.

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Hong Kong Stocks join global sell-off
Aug 18,2017

The Hong Kong stock market finished softer on Friday, 18 August 2017, as risk sentiments dampened on worries about political turmoil in the US and a terrorist attack in Spain. The Hang Seng Index lost 1.08%, or 296.65 points, to 27,047.57 while the H-shares index declined 1.00%, or 107.77 points, to 10,693.65 points. Turnover stood at HK$84.48 billion.

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China Market closed steady
Aug 18,2017

The Mainland China equity market ended virtually flat on Friday, 18 August 2017, with investor optimism over strong corporate earnings and economic fundamentals offsetting some pressure to take profits from recent gains. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index ended 0.01% higher, or 0.29 points, at 3,268.72, while the Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on Chinas second exchange, dipped 0.37%, or 7.13 points, to 1,902.25. The blue-chip CSI300 index tacked on 0.1%, to 3,725.09 points. The blue-chip CSI300 index tacked on 0.1%, to 3,725.09 points, while the Shanghai Composite Index was unchanged at 3,269.24 points.

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Nikkei extends losing streak on US political woes, Spain terror attack
Aug 18,2017

The Japan share market finished down for third second session on Friday, 18 August 2017, amid risk aversion selloff on following sharp falls in New York overnight on rising concerns over the fate of US President Donald Trumps economic agenda and fatal terrorist attack in Barcelona, Spain. With the exception of the marine transportation and food sector, all industry categories closed in negative territory, with iron and steel, insurance and nonferrous metal-linked stocks comprising the days biggest decliners. The Nikkei 225 average fell 232.22 points, or 1.18%, to 19,470.41, its lowest finish since May 2. The Topix, including all first-section issues, closed down 17.46 points, or 1.08%, at 1,597.36. Falling issues far outnumbered rising ones 1,672 to 279 in the TSEs first section, while 72 issues were unchanged. Volume rose to 1.671 billion shares from 1.436 billion shares on Thursday.

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Australia Stocks stuck in the red
Aug 18,2017

Australian equity market finished down for second straight session on Friday, 18 August 2017, amid broadbased losses following hefty declines on Wall Street overnight on political uncertainty and the Barcelona terror attack. The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.6 percent or 32.11 points to 5,747.1 at the close of trade.

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Asia Pacific Market: Stocks end mixed
Aug 17,2017

Asia Pacific share market closed mostly lower on Thursday, 17 August 2017, on growing uncertainty over the pace of U.S. interest rate rises after minutes from the Federal Reserves July meeting showed that policymakers appeared increasingly wary about recent weak inflation and some called for halting interest rate increases until it was clear the trend was transitory.

Minutes from the Federal Reserves Open Market Committee meeting last month (July 25-26) showed a divided Fed. Some members of its policy committee think interest rates should stay about where they are because inflation is still low. Others felt that rates should be raised because delays might lead to dangerously high inflation later. The U.S. central banks preferred inflation measure has remained below its 2% target for more than five years.

The account of the ECBs own meeting also showed caution about inflation and the concern that investors might be expecting a shift away from stimulus programs sooner than warranted by economic conditions.

COMMODITIES: Benchmark U.S. crude fell 17 cents to $46.61 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It lost 77 cents, or 1.6%, to $46.78 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, shed 11 cents to $50.16 per barrel. It dipped 53 cents, or 1%, to $50.27 a barrel in London.

Gold prices generally firm up when it looks as though US rates might not rise as sharply as markets thought and sure enough prices inched higher on Thursday.

Among Asian bourses

Australia Market closes in negative territory as Telstra drags

Australian equity market finished session down, snapping three sessions of gains, after mixed earnings reports from market heavyweights Telstras offset most of the gains by materials shares. At the close, the S&P/ASX index was 0.1%, or 5.9 points, lower to 5779.2, while the broader All Ordinaries index also finished down 0.1%, or 3.6 points, to 5827.2.

Telstra was the biggest drag on the index, plummeting 9.7% to A$3.87 in their worst fall since the GFC after the company cut its year-ahead dividend forecast and revealed a reduced full-year profit. Telstra said it is facing headwinds from a new state-owned National Broadband Network, which will replace the telecom giants copper lines by about 2020.

Financials were down, with QBE falling down 8% to A$11.17 after Australias biggest insurer said its overall payout ratio worsened due to a claims blowout in its emerging markets unit. Elsewhere in the finance sector, CBA lost 0.4% to A$79.55, Westpac 0.1% to A$32.72, ANZ 0.2% to A$30.36, while NAB 0.1% to A$31.29.

Wesfarmers closed up 0.3% on $41.87 as its full-year results revealed a jump in full-year profit, strength in its Bunnings Hardware arm offsetting competitive headwinds battering Coles.

Resource stocks firmed as base metals rallied in overnight trade, with BHP jumped 1% to A$25.95,Rio Tinto 1.4% A$63.61, and Fortescue Metal 0.9% to A$5.55. Woodside Petroleum shares shed 2% to A$29.28.

Evolution Mining jumped 5% after it vowed to return 50pc in after-tax profits to shareholders, while Whitehaven Coal ended 2% lower on the release of its full-year report card.

Treasury Wines shares leapt 3% after growth in North America and Asia sealed a 50% lift in earnings, Cochlear jumped 7% on its report card, while Blackmores added over 4%% after it announced the succession of COO Richard Henfrey to chief executive.

Nikkei closes lower

The Japan share market finished down for straight second session, weighed down by the yens strengthening against the dollar after the minutes of the U.S. Federal Reserves July policy meeting signaled that interest rate hikes would proceed at a slower pace. But individual players actively bought small- and mid-cap issues, supporting the markets downside. The 225-issue Nikkei average shed 26.65 points, or 0.14%, to end at 19,702.63. The Topix index of all first-section issues closed down 1.18 points, or 0.07%, at 1,614.82. Rising stocks outnumbered declining ones on the Tokyo Stock Exchange by 1925 to 1243 and 282 ended unchanged. The Nikkei Volatility, which measures the implied volatility of Nikkei 225 options, was down 3.34% to 15.35.

Shares of financial sector were broadly lower. Major bank Mitsubishi UFJ fell 0.8% and rival Mizuho was down 0.2%. Japans top brokerage Nomura lost 0.8%.

The stronger yen hit export-oriented names, with Nissan dropping 0.3% and Toyota falling 0.1%. A stronger yen is a negative for Japanese shares because it hurts the profitability of major exporters.

By contrast, Toho Zinc jumped 11.8% after zinc prices hit their highest in about 10 years on the London Metal Exchange on Wednesday.

China Market gains on industrial and material stocks strength

The Mainland China equity market ended higher, on the back of strength in industrial and material stocks, but weakness in technology and consumer non-cyclicals kept a lid on gains. Shanghai Composite adding 0.68% or 21.98 points to 3,268.43 while the CSI 300 - which tracks the large caps listed in Shanghai and Shenzhen - increased 0.54% or 19.86 points to 3,721.28. The Shenzhen Composite Index tacked on 0.58% or 10.99 points to 1,909.38.

Late on Wednesday, Chinas cabinet said the country will become more open for global investors, citing sectors of new-energy vehicle manufacturing, ship design, aircraft maintenance and railway passenger transportation. The measures to ease foreign investment restrictions came after the US announced its probe of Chinas intellectual property practices, and the prospect of lifting foreign investment is having a significant effect on the market.

Shares of industrials were up, with China Nuclear Engineering Corp leading rally, up by the daily limit of 10%. On Wednesday, the company said that newly signed contracts in the first seven months increased 17.2% from the previous year.

Materials and resources stocks advanced. Aluminum Corp of China (Chalco) shares finished up 1.1% on tracking strength in aluminum prices. Aluminium prices have reached multi-year highs on expectations of supply curbs as China reforms its metals industry.

Shipping and shipbuilding companies were also higher, with their prospects lifted as the Baltic Exchanges main sea freight index rose for a 13th straight session. COSCO Shipping Holdings Co gained 5% and China CSSC Holdings surged 6%.

China Life Insurance gained 1%, after the insurer said it will buy a 10.22% stake in China Unicom as part of a deal that saw the telecom firm receive US$11.7 billion from 14 private and state investors. China Unicom said Wednesday that 14 investors will acquire a combined 35.2% stake in the companys Shanghai-listed unit, China United Network Communications, for 78 billion yuan. China Unicom is among the first group of state-owned enterprises that Beijing has given approval to for a pilot run for mixed ownership reform. Shares of China Unicom were suspended from trading on Thursday.

Hong Kong Stocks end down

The Hong Kong stock market finished softer, as better-than-expected earnings from market heavyweight Tencent was tempered by concern equity valuations were turning expensive. Market was also dragged down by Chinese commercial banks. The Hang Seng Index slipped 0.2% to 27,344.22 at the close after changing direction a few times. The H-shares index lost 0.15%, or 16.46 points, to 10,801.42 points. Turnover increased to HK$96.4 billion from HK$81.8 billion on Wednesday.

Hang Seng Indexes Company yesterday announced its quarterly review for the benchmark index. It decided to include WH Group (00288) into its HSI. WH shot up 2.8% to HK$8.2. Sunny Optical (02382), which was tipped but failed to join the HSI, slipped 2.7% to HK$107.2.

Shares of Tencent advanced 1.92% to HK$329.4, after briefly surging 5.3% to an all-time high of HK$340.4. The company reported late Wednesday that its net income increased 64% to 32.7 billion yuan (US$4.9 billion) for the first six months of the year, well above consensus estimates. Revenues gained 57% to 106.2 billion yuan, fuelled by growth in smartphone game and advertising businesses.

Hong Kongs flagship carrier Cathay Pacific stock advanced 0.86% to HK$11.80 on Thursday despite the disappointing results. The companys posted a HK$2.05 billion loss for the first half.

Shares of Chinese commercial banks were lower. China Construction Bank declined 0.60% to HK$6.62 and ICBC lost 0.89% to HK$5.60.

Swire Properties shares lost 1.88% to HK$78.5 despite the company reporting that its interim earnings beat analysts forecasts.

Tian Ge Interactive, a Hangzhou-based live social video platform, was suspended from trading after sinking as much as 9.2%. The losses came after Emerson Analytics issued a report that alleged Tian Ge had exaggerated its user base by about six times and inflated its revenue by more than 100%.

Indian Market settles with minuscule gains

Indian benchmark indices settled with minor gains after a volatile trading session. The barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, rose 24.57 points or 0.08% to settle at 31,795.46. The Nifty 50 index advanced 6.85 points or 0.07% to settle at 9,904.15. Weakness in European stocks and subdued trading on Asian bourses kept investors risk-appetite in check.

Stocks of public sector banks edged higher. Stocks of private sector banks declined. IT major Infosys advanced after the company announced that its board will consider a proposal for buyback of equity shares at a meeting to be held on 19 August 2017.

United Bank of India rose 0.54% at Rs 18.60. The bank said that it has reduced deposit rates for deposit upto Rs 1 crore from 6.25% to 6.1% per annum. Deposit rate for more than Rs 1 crore has been reduced from 4.5% to 4.35% and amount upto Rs 50 lakh has been revised downwards from 4% to 3.5% effective 18 August 2017. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 16 August 2017.

HDFC Bank declined 0.86% at Rs 1,765. The bank during trading hours today, 17 August 2017, announced a revision in its savings bank interest rate effective 19 August 2017. Post revision, customers maintaining savings bank account balance of Rs 50 lakh and above will continue to earn interest at 4% per annum. Customers maintaining account balance of below Rs 50 lakh will earn interest at 3.5% per annum. The revised rates will be applicable to both resident and non-resident customers.

Yes Bank lost 1.28% at Rs 1,738.95. The bank with effect from 1 September 2017 has revised its savings account interest rate slabs for resident & non-resident customers. The new slabs were: 5% per annum for savings balances less than Rs 1 Lakh, 6% (unchanged) for balances of Rs 1 lakh to less than Rs 1 crore and 6.25% per annum for balances above Rs 1 crore. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 16 August 2017.

IT major Infosys advanced 4.54% at Rs 1,021.15 after the company announced that the board of directors of the company will consider a proposal for buyback of equity shares at its meeting to be held on 19 August 2017. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 16 August 2017.

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Nikkei closes lower
Aug 17,2017

The Japan share market finished down for straight second session on Thursday, 17 August 2017, weighed down by the yens strengthening against the dollar after the minutes of the U.S. Federal Reserves July policy meeting signaled that interest rate hikes would proceed at a slower pace. But individual players actively bought small- and mid-cap issues, supporting the markets downside. The 225-issue Nikkei average shed 26.65 points, or 0.14%, to end at 19,702.63. The Topix index of all first-section issues closed down 1.18 points, or 0.07%, at 1,614.82. Rising stocks outnumbered declining ones on the Tokyo Stock Exchange by 1925 to 1243 and 282 ended unchanged. The Nikkei Volatility, which measures the implied volatility of Nikkei 225 options, was down 3.34% to 15.35.

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Hong Kong Stocks end down
Aug 17,2017

The Hong Kong stock market finished softer on Thursday, 17 August 2017, as better-than-expected earnings from market heavyweight Tencent was tempered by concern equity valuations were turning expensive. Market was also dragged down by Chinese commercial banks. The Hang Seng Index slipped 0.2% to 27,344.22 at the close after changing direction a few times. The H-shares index lost 0.15 per cent, or 16.46 points, to 10,801.42 points.

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China Market gains on industrial and material stocks strength
Aug 17,2017

The Mainland China equity market ended higher on Thursday, 17 August 2017, on the back of strength in industrial and material stocks, but weakness in technology and consumer non-cyclicals kept a lid on gains. Shanghai Composite adding 0.68% or 21.98 points to 3,268.43 while the CSI 300 - which tracks the large caps listed in Shanghai and Shenzhen - increased 0.54% or 19.86 points to 3,721.28. The Shenzhen Composite Index tacked on 0.58% or 10.99 points to 1,909.38.

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Australia Market closes in negative territory as Telstra drags
Aug 17,2017

Australian equity market finished session down on Thursday, 17 August 2017, snapping three sessions of gains, after mixed earnings reports from market heavyweights Telstras offset most of the gains by materials shares. At the close, the S&P/ASX index was 0.1%, or 5.9 points, lower to 5779.2, while the broader All Ordinaries index also finished down 0.1%, or 3.6 points, to 5827.2.

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Asia Pacific Market: Stocks recoup gain on bargain hunting
Aug 14,2017

Asia Pacific share market inclined on Monday, 14 August 2017, as investors chased for bottom fishing after heavy losses in the previous week on lingering geopolitical tensions over North Korea.

The market has already digested worries about a possible armed clash between the United States and North Korea n++with no major news reports (on the matter) releasedn++ in the weekend.

The days advances came after U.S. national security adviser H.R. McMaster and Central Intelligence Agency Director Mike Pompeo talked down the risk of a nuclear war with North Korea over the weekend, following remarks by President Donald Trump that American armed forces were locked and loaded, should Pyongyang act unwisely.

Among Asian bourses

Australia Stocks recoup 0.65%

Australian equity market finished session higher, as investors chased for bottom fishing after benchmark index closed near 3-week low in the previous session. Meanwhile, gain in base metal prices and broadly optimistic earnings from Bendigo and Adelaide Bank and Carsales.Com also propelled stocks buying. At the close, the S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.65%, or 37.26 points, to 5,730.40, while the broader All Ordinaries index also closed up 0.61%, or 35.08 points at 5778.60.

The materials sector was among the best performing with mining giants BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto edging up 0.4% and 0.6%, respectively, after London copper and aluminium prices advanced on Monday, holding near recent two-year peaks on a weaker US dollar.

Technology stocks rose aided by Carsales.Com, which climbed 3.3% to hit a record high. The auto classifieds website operator reported an 8% increase in its revenue for fiscal 2017.

Bendigo and Adelaide Bank gained 8% after it posted a 4% increase in its cash earnings for the 12-months ended June 30.

Meanwhile, Commonwealth Bank of Australia gained 1% after it said its chief executive Ian Narev would retire by June 2018, in the wake of a scandal over money laundering and terror financing allegations.

Rubber products group Ansell slipped 3% after the rubber-products maker said its full-year profit fell 7.2%, missing forecasts, as it was hurt by climbing raw material costs and one-off acquisition charges.

Aurizon Holdings was down 1.5% after the coal rail operator said it had decided to quit its freight business.

Nikkei extends losses on geopolitical tension over North Korea

The Japan share market finished session at three-month low, as a firmer yen compounded ongoing concern over tension between North Korea and the U.S. however, the markets downside drew support from data showing Japans solid economic growth. Most of the TSE sectors declined, with iron and steel, nonferrous metal and metal product-related issues comprised those that declined the most by the close of play. The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average lost 192.64 points, or 0.98%, from Thursday to finish the day at 19,537.10, marking its lowest close since May 2. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, dropped 18.19 points, or 1.12%, lower to close at 1,599.06. Japan share market dosed on Friday, 11 August 2017, for Obon holiday.

The stronger yen battered automakers Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Subaru, camera producer Canon and electronics maker Panasonic. Megabank groups Mitsubishi UFJ, Sumitomo Mitsui and Mizuho as well as insurers Dai-ichi Life and Sompo Holdings met with selling after their U.S. peers lost ground in New York trading on Friday. Other major losers included steelmaker JFE Holdings and precision equipment maker V-Technology. By contrast, Nexon jumped 14.25% after the online game provider on Thursday reported a robust operating profit for the first half of 2017.

Japans economy expanded at the fastest pace in more than two years in the second quarter as consumer and company spending picked up, highlighting a long-awaited bounce in domestic demand. The worlds third-largest economy expanded by a much stronger-than-expected annualised rate of 4.0% in April-June, posting its longest uninterrupted run of growth in a decade, government data showed on Monday. Compared to the previous quarter, the economy expanded 1.0%, versus the median estimate for 0.6% growth. Japans growth had been largely reliant on robust exports earlier in the year, though there were signs private consumption was picking up. Annualised GDP for previous quarter was revised up to a 1.5% increase, while quarterly real (inflation adjusted) GDP was revised up to 0.4% growth from a 0.3% increase.

China Stocks up on bargain hunting

The Mainland China equity market ended higher, as mainland investors chased for bargain hunting after heavy losses in the previous session. However, margain gains were limited as economic data suggested the potential for slowing growth in the worlds second-largest economy. Most of SSE sectors inclined, with shares in the high-tech, consumer and healthcare firms being notable gainers. The blue-chip CSI300 index rose 1.3%, to 3,694.68, while the Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.9% to 3,237.36 points.

Alcohol makers rose. Kweichow Moutai regained ground lost on Friday to rise 3.3% to a record-high close of 499.83 yuan.

Steel producers were higher after data showed Chinas steel output rose 10.3% in July to a monthly record of 74.02 million tonnes. However, steel prices declined in Shanghai after the Shanghai Futures Exchange moved on Friday to limit intraday rebar positions and hiked fees to combat speculative trading. Hesteel Co Ltd rose 1.7% and Angang Steel Co Ltd gained 3.1%.

Aluminum Corp of China gained 0.8% despite data showing that Chinas aluminum output fell 8.2% in July from a record high a month earlier. Capacity cuts have sent prices to multi-year highs.

Display company BOE Technology Group Co gained 3%, and was the most traded component of the CSI300 index by volume.

Voice recognition software maker iFlytek Co gained the daily limit of 10%. The company said last week that its first-half profits rose 58.1%.

ECONOMIC NEWS: 1) China retail sales came in below expectations in July although growth remained in double digits for the fifth straight month, according to statistics released by the National Bureau of Statistics on Monday. Retail sales grew 10.4% in July to CNY2.96 trillion, the lowest since the January-February period. It was 0.6%age point lower than 11% in June. For the January to July period, retail sales reached CNY20.2 trillion, a 10.4% year-on-year increase. The growth rate was flat with the January-June period.

2) Chinas industrial output growth slowed sharply in July following a sharp increase in June, an indication that the countrys economic growth is slowing. Industrial output grew 6.4% on an annualized basis, well below the 7.6% growth rate in June, while still above the 6.0% growth rate recorded in July 2016, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said Monday. The July industrial output growth rate was the lowest since the January-February period this year. On a seasonally adjusted basis, industrial output increased 0.41% month-on-month in July, below the rates of 0.81% in June and 0.51% in May, also lower than the 0.52% rate last July. The July growth rate was the lowest since December 2015, matching that months 0.41% increase. For the January-July period, industrial output increased 6.8% on a year-on-year basis, above the 6.0% increase during the same period last year. The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) cited three reasons for the slowdown in July industrial output growth: hot weather causing more factories to shut down production temporarily; the effect of flooding in southern China; and the impact of the governments continued drive to eliminate excess industrial capacity.

Hong Kong Stocks end higher

The Hong Kong stock market finished higher, as investor chased for bottom fishing following sharp falls on Friday, largely shrugging off Chinas official data indicating slowing growth in the worlds second-largest economy. The Hang Seng index rose 1.4% to 27,250.23 points, while the China Enterprises Index gained 1.3% to 10,707.24 points. Turnover decreased significantly to HK$85.2 billion from HK$139.4 billion on Friday.

The northbound quota balance of the Shanghai-HK Connect program was RMB13.212 billion, surpassing the daily allowed quota of RMB13 billion. It implied a net outflow of RMB212 million. The southbound quota balance was RMB10.932 billion, also exceeding the daily allowed quota of RMB10.5 billion. As for the Shenzhen-HK Connect, the northbound quota balance was RMB12.462 billion, accounting for 95.9% of the daily allowed quota of RMB13 billion. The southbound quota balance was RMB10.099 billion, accounting for 96.2% of the daily allowed quota of RMB10.5 billion.

Heavyweight Tencent Holdings jumped 4.3% on bargain hunting. Despite its 4.9% tumble on Friday, the stock is up more than 70% so far in 2017 amid a robust growth outlook for its online games and WeChat messaging platform. It was well supported by Apple-supplier AAC Technologies Holdings and Geely Automobile Holdings, which rose at least 4.3%. Tencent will report its earnings on Wednesday (16 August). Citi Research rated the stock buy with a target price of HK$380.

Industrial & Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), China Construction Bank (CCB) and Bank of China (BOC) rose at least 1.6% to pace gains for mainland financial companies, despite weaker-than-expected Chinese retail sales and industrial output data for July.

AAC soared 7% to HK$114.2 after Nomura raised its target price for the dynamic components manufacturer by 14% to HK$130. Hutai Research also lifted its target price for AAC to HK$125 from HK$112. Sunny Optical (02382) surged 8.3% to HK$104.5 ahead of its earnings report later today.

China Unicom (00762) release positive profit alert, expecting its interim net to soar 69% to RMB2.4 billion. It jumped 5.6% to HK$12.02. China Mobile (00941) softened 0.3% to HK$87.45. China Telecom (00718) edged up 0.5% to HK$3.8.

Sands China added 0.4% after the casino operator late on Friday posted a 23% increase in first-half group net profit.

.Indian Market nudges higher on positive global stocks

Indian bourses logged modest gains on first trading day of the week boosted by positive global cues. The barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, gained 235.44 points or 0.75% to settle at 31,449.03. The Nifty 50 index gained 83.35 points or 0.86% to settle at 9,794.15. Global stocks rallied as US inflation data dampened prospects of a rate hike this year. Stock markets remain closed tomorrow, 15 August 2017, on account of Independence Day.

Among the sectoral indices on BSE, the BSE Materials index (up 2.82%), the BSE Realty index (up 5.95%), the BSE Power index (up 2.5%) and the BSE Metal index (up 3.53%) outperformed the Sensex. The BSE Teck index (down 0.4%), the BSE Bankex (up 0.48%) and the BSE Telecom index (up 0.05%) outperformed the Sensex.

Bank stocks rose. Among private bank stocks, RBL Bank (up 1.29%), HDFC Bank (up 0.15%), ICICI Bank (up 1.64%), Axis Bank (up 0.27%) and Yes Bank (up 2.22%) rose. Kotak Mahindra Bank (down 0.87%) and IndusInd Bank (down 0.14%) fell.

Among PSU bank stocks, Indian Bank (up 4.73%), Central Bank of India (up 4.57%), Punjab National Bank (up 2.1%), Canara Bank (up 1.77%), Bank of India (up 1.29%) and Union Bank of India (up 0.59%) rose. State Bank of India (SBI) (down 0.93%) and IDBI Bank (down 0.57%) fell.

Bank of Baroda slipped 0.25% after net profit fell 52% to Rs 203.39 crore on 1.9% rise in total income to Rs 12103.86 crore in Q1 June 2017 over Q1 June 2016. The announcement was made after market hours on Friday, 11 August 2017. Gross non-performing assets (NPAs) rose to Rs 46172.77 crore as on 30 June 2017 as against Rs 42718.70 crore as on 31 March 2017 and Rs 42991.68 crore as on 30 June 2016. The ratio of gross NPAs to gross advances rose to 11.4% as on 30 June 2017 as against 10.46% as on 31 March 2017 and 11.15% as on 30 June 2016. The ratio of net NPAs to net advances rose to 5.17% as on 30 June 2017 as against 4.72% as on 31 March 2017 and 5.73% as on 30 June 2016. Provisions and contingencies rose 18.16% to Rs 2368.05 crore in Q1 June 2017 over Q1 June 2016. The Provision Coverage Ratio (PCR) stood at 66.28% as at 30 June 2017. Separately, Bank of Baroda said that it allotted 8,500 Basel III compliant unsecured, perpetual bonds carrying coupon of 8.65% and face value of Rs 10 lakh each worth Rs 850 crore to ten allottees on 11 August 2017.

Metal shares were in demand. Jindal Steel & Power (up 7.18%), National Aluminium Company (up 5.67%), Tata Steel (up 4.21%), Vedanta (up 3.77%), Hindalco Industries (up 3.76%), JSW Steel (up 3.96%), Hindustan Zinc (up 3.84%), Hindustan Copper (up 3.68%), Bhushan Steel (up 3.46%), NMDC (up 2.85%) and Steel Authority of India (up 2.56%) edged higher.

Adani Ports & Special Economic Zone (APSEZ) gained 3.07%. The companys consolidated net profit fell 13.7% to Rs 710.25 crore on 50.3% rise in net sales to Rs 2745.14 crore in Q1 June 2017 over Q1 June 2016. The announcement of results was made on Saturday, 12 August 2017. The stock had dropped 7.27% in three sessions to settle at Rs 383.90 on 11 August 2017, from a close of Rs 414 on 8 August 2017 ahead of the results.

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China Stocks up on bargain hunting
Aug 14,2017

The Mainland China equity market ended higher on Monday, 14 August 2017, as mainland investors chased for bargain hunting after heavy losses in the previous session. However, margain gains were limited as economic data suggested the potential for slowing growth in the worlds second-largest economy. Most of SSE sectors inclined, with shares in the high-tech, consumer and healthcare firms being notable gainers. The blue-chip CSI300 index rose 1.3%, to 3,694.68, while the Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.9% to 3,237.36 points.

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Nikkei extends losses on geopolitical tension over North Korea
Aug 14,2017

The Japan share market finished session at three-month low on Monday, 14 August 2017, as a firmer yen compounded ongoing concern over tension between North Korea and the U.S. however, the markets downside drew support from data showing Japans solid economic growth. Most of the TSE sectors declined, with iron and steel, nonferrous metal and metal product-related issues comprised those that declined the most by the close of play. The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average lost 192.64 points, or 0.98%, from Thursday to finish the day at 19,537.10, marking its lowest close since May 2. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, dropped 18.19 points, or 1.12%, lower to close at 1,599.06. Japan share market dosed on Friday, 11 August 2017, for Obon holiday.

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Australia Stocks recoup 0.65%
Aug 14,2017

Australian equity market finished session higher on Monday, 14 August 2017, as investors chased for bottom fishing after benchmark index closed near 3-week low in the previous session. Meanwhile, gain in base metal prices and broadly optimistic earnings from Bendigo and Adelaide Bank and Carsales.Com also propelled stocks buying. At the close, the S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.65%, or 37.26 points, to 5,730.40, while the broader All Ordinaries index also closed up 0.61%, or 35.08 points at 5778.60.

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Asia Pacific Market: Stocks Rattled by North Korea Tensions
Aug 11,2017

Asia Pacific share market closed down on Friday, 11 August 2017, as risk-off selling flared on escalating sabre-rattling between North Korea and the US. MSCIs broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dropped 0.5%.

Overnight, Wall Street closed sharply lower after Trump, with fiery rhetoric, warned Pyongyang against attacking Guam or US allies after it disclosed plans to fire missiles over Japan to land near the US Pacific territory. Trump took specific aim at North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, saying, he had disrespected our country greatly, and would not be getting away with it.

Trump issued a new warning to Pyongyang on Friday, saying in a tweet: Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely. North Korea had responded to Trumps previous promise to unleash fire and fury with a threat to land a missile near the U.S. Pacific territory of Guam.

In commodities, Gold prices, which hit a two-month low on Thursday, were steady at USD 1,286.16 an ounce, after surging over 2% in the past two sessions. Ongoing global glut concerns lingered in oil markets despite a bigger-than-expected draw in U.S. crude inventories, leaving prices volatile. US crude oil crude futures edged up 10 cents to $48.69 per barrel. Brent was last at $52.01, up 0.21% on the day.

Among Asian bourses

Australia Stocks fall 1.2%

Australian equity market finished session near 3-week low, as investors fled to safer assets after the inflammatory exchange of words between North Korea and the United States heightened geopolitical tensions and uncertainty in financial markets. At the close, the S&P/ASX200 index was 1.2%, or 67.8 points lower at 5693.1 while the broader All Ordinaries index also closed down 1.2%, or 67 points at 5743.5. For the week, the S&P/ASX200 index was down 0.5%.

Shares of financial declined, with Australias top mortgage lender Commonwealth Bank of Australia slipping 0.7% to settle at its lowest in over two months. Sentiment in the banking sector was also dented after Australias central bank said it aims to keep interest rates at record lows for a while, with any tightening quite some time away and likely to be gradual as households try to whittle down a mountain of debt. CBA shares down 0.7% to $80.50, Westpac closed 1.3% lower, ANZ lost 1.9%, while NAB shares dropped 1%, after it provided the market with a third-quarter update.

Material stocks - vulnerable to heightened risk aversion - bore the brunt of the geopolitical tensions, with miners BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto slipping 2% and 2.8%, respectively.

The flight from riskier assets helped gold stocks, as spot gold prices rose this week. Newcrest Mining rose 2.1% to close at its highest in three-and-a-half months, and posted its fourth straight session of gains.

China Stocks fall as North Korea tensions simmer

The Mainland China equity market ended steep lower, as mainland investors opted to book profit made in recent session amid escalating tensions between North Korea and the United States. Most of SSE sectors declined, with shares in the mining, financials, and manufacturing sectors being notable losers. The Shanghai Composite Index shed 1.6%, or 53.21 points, to 3,208.54, while the Shenzhen Composite Index lost 1.6%, or 30.0 points, to 1,842.6.

Concerns over North Koreas plan to fire ballistic missiles into waters near the U.S. territory of Guam in the Pacific Ocean have shaken markets around the world, and they are now affecting markets in China. U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday escalated his threats against the Asian nation, saying he may not have been tough enough earlier this week, when he declared Pyongyangs threats will be met with fire and fury.

Shares in materials firms continued their downward course, with Xiamen Tungsten falling 9%, while Jiangxi Copper lost 8% as prices of some metals in Shanghai also felt the pressure of rising North Korea-United States tensions.

Hong Kong Stocks tumble

The Hong Kong stock market finished lower for third straight session, as investor sentiment succumbed to tensions between the U.S. and North Korea. The market also took a huge knock from technology giant Tencent, after news emerged that its successful messaging app, WeChat, and two other Chinese tech heavyweights are being probed by the government. The Hang Seng Index slid 2.0% or 560.49 points at 26,883.51, capping a weekly loss of 2.5%, its worst in 2017. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index also fell 1.9% or 209.23 points to 10,572.97. Turnover increased to HK$139.4 billion from HK$122 billion on Thursday.

Utilities counters became buying targets of risk-averse investors. CLP Holdings (00002) gained 0.8% to HK$82.9. Power Assets (00006) was unchanged at HK$78.1.

REITs failed to display their defense capabilities. Link REIT (00823) fell 0.7% to HK$62.5. Fortune REIT (00778) slipped 1.9% to HK$9.2. Champion REIT (02778) sank 3.2% to HK$5.77.

Financials were lower, led by China Life which was lower 2.9% to HK$23.55 and China Construction Bank which fell 1.6% at HK$6.34.

Chinas largest aluminium producer was among the biggest loser, tumbling 8.9% to HK$5.19. Coal mining giant China Shenhua also slid 4.4% to HK$19.1. Geely Auto skidding 4.5% to HK$18.42. Apple supplier AAC Tech had 3.8% peeled from its value, to HK$106.7.

Tencent tumbled 4.9% to HK$310.6 as Chinas internet watchdog announced it is probing WeChat as well as social media platforms backed by Baidu and Sina. It accused the three of violating cyber security laws because their users have n++spread information deemed a threat to the national security, including pornography, rumours and violencen++.

Wanda Hotel Development rose for a second day, surging 9% to HK$1.52. Its share price skyrocketed 40% on Thursday after it said it would buy property and tourism assets from Dalian Wanda Group chairman Wang Jianlin.

Sensex settles at over 5-1/2-week low

Indian stock market registered strong losses on last trading day of the week on weak global cues amid escalating tensions between the US and North Korea. Sentiment was also affected adversely after the finance ministry said in its mid-year economic survey today, 11 August 2017, that there are downside risks to the Indian governments growth forecast of 6.75-7.5% for the fiscal year to March 2018. The barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, lost 317.74 points or 1.01% to settle at 31,213.59. The Nifty index lost 109.45 points or 1.11% to settle at 9,710.80.

Metal and mining stocks dropped. Hindalco Industries slumped 7.15% after net profit fell 1.36% to Rs 290 crore on 27.55% growth in revenue from operations to Rs 10407 crore in Q1 June 2017 over Q1 June 2016.

MOIL rose 3.57% after the company said its board recommended 1:1 bonus issue of shares. MOIL announced that its net profit surged 107.3% to Rs 97.73 crore on 82.7% increase in net sales to Rs 339.40 crore in Q1 June 2017 over Q1 June 2016.

State Bank of India (SBI) lost 5.36% after the banks net profit fell 20.44% to Rs 2005.53 crore on 28.57% rise in total income to Rs 62911.08 crore in Q1 June 2017 over Q1 June 2016. The first quarter results are not comparable with year ago period due to merger of its subsidiaries with self, SBI said.

Japan share market dosed on Friday, 11 August 2017, for Obon holiday.

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