BEIJING - World stock markets were mostly higher Monday after a sixth month of healthy employment growth in the U.S., but gains were tempered by jitters over Argentina's debt default and a Portuguese bank bailout.
In morning trading, France's CAC-40 rose 0.3 percent to 4,216.11 while Germany's DAX declined 0.1 percent to 9,201.09. Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.1 percent to 6,688.28. Futures suggested a Wall Street rebound from last week's declines. The futures for the Standard & Poor's 500 and the Dow Jones industrial average were both up 0.2 percent.
China's Shanghai Composite Index jumped 1.7 percent to 2,223.33 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.3 percent to 24,600.08. Taiwan's Taiex gained 0.7 percent to 9,330.19 while South Korea's Kospi added 0.4 percent to 2,080.42. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 ended down 0.3 percent at 15,474.50 and Sydney's S&P/ASX 200 shed 0.3 percent to 5,540.90. Southeast Asian markets were mostly higher.
July employment data on Friday showed the United States added more than 200,000 jobs for a sixth straight month. That was slightly below expectations but added to signs an economic recovery is gaining traction. At the same time, most economists don't think the pace of job growth is enough to cause the Federal Reserve to speed up its timetable for raising interest rates. Most still think the Fed will start raising rates to ward off inflation around mid-2015.
The International Swaps and Derivatives Association ruled on Friday that Argentina had defaulted on its bonds for the second time in 13 years. The ruling came in the midst of a high-profile court dispute with a handful of creditors that has complicated Argentina's repayment plan. The default triggers payments to holders of credit insurance.
As a result of Argentina's default, "we get skittish investors preferring to stay out of the market," said analyst Desmond Chua of CMC Markets in a report.
Portugal's central bank announced late Sunday it will provide 4.9 billion euros ($6.6 billion) in an emergency rescue to prevent the collapse of ailing bank Banco Espirito Santo, one of the country's biggest financial institutions. Banco Espirito Santo's share price plunged by 75 percent last week after the bank reported a half-year loss of 3.6 billion euros following an audit that revealed previously undisclosed debts.
The dollar inched down to 102.57 yen from the previous session's 102.59 yen. The euro declined to $1.3426 from $1.3428. Benchmark U.S. crude for September delivery was up 22 cents at $98.10 per barrel.