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Thomas Hughes
Asian Shares Mixed

The U.S. Futures Are Moving Higher In Early Trading

The U.S. futures are moving higher in early trading, extending gains set in the previous session. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is the laggard at +0.15% but within a hair of 29,000. The NASDAQ is in the lead, shares of Apple are pushing it higher after news sales in China rose 18% last month.

The market is also buoyed by improving sentiment as geopolitical tensions ease. On the trade front, the Phase One Trade Deal is set to be signed next week. On the Iran front, both sides have backed down although the region is still a powder keg ready to explode. Iran may be responsible for the downing of a passenger airliner earlier this week. The U.S. is tightening the economic screws with more sanctions. It’s only a matter of time before the two butt heads again.

In economic news, the non-farm payrolls figure was less than expected at 145,000. The unemployment rate held steady and wages grew at a 2.9% clip over last year. KB Homes reported earnings last night and disappointed investors. The company reported a smaller than expected increase in revenue but beat on the bottom line while providing a positive outlook for next year. Shares fell 1.5% on the news.


Europe Is Cautious At Midday, The Markets Are Flat

Traders in the EU are cautious on Friday despite the U.S. march to new highs. The DAX is the only index firmly in the green, it’s up 0.22%, while the FTSE and CAC are both just shy of break-even. The situation in the Mideast is only one that traders are watching, the outcome of the Phase One deal signing is another.

Closer to home, the next phase of Brexit will soon begin. The UK Parliament passed a resolution allowing the country to leave the EU at the end of this month with a deal. This is, however, only the first step in a process that will require a more comprehensive negotiation to take place. With only 11 months to reach the final deal, it is certain the negotiations will be intense.

Ryanair reported this morning, beating consensus and raising guidance. The news sent the entire airline complex higher with Easyjet and British Airways both up more than 4.0%.

Asian Markets Are Mixed, Apple Suppliers Lead

Asian indices are largely higher at the end of Friday’s session. The Korean Kospi led the move with a gain of 0.91%, the Shanghai Composite is the only to post a loss. Shares of Apple suppliers were in the lead across the region following the sales-news out of China. At the other end of the spectrum, shares of Fast Retailing fell -2.78%. The company reported weaker than expected earnings and revenue and blamed unrest in Hong Kong and a boycott in South Korea.

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