MANILA, Philippines - World stock markets were muted Tuesday as profit taking offset mildly positive economic indicators from China.
In early European trading, Britain's
FTSE 100 was nearly flat at 6,562.83. France's CAC 40 was down 0.1 percent at
4,131.75. Germany's DAX rose 0.1 percent
Futures pointed to modest gains on
Wall Street, with Dow and S&P 500 futures both up 0.1 percent.
Evan Lucas, strategist as IG Markets
in Melbourne, Australia, said some investors locked in profits after two days
of gains that were fueled by stronger hiring and economic growth in the United
Chinese economic indicators didn't
change the picture of a moderate recovery in the world's No. 2 economy.
China's factory production rose 10
percent in November from a year earlier, slightly lower than analysts'
forecasts. But retail sales rose 13.7 percent, which was
Andrew Sullivan of Kim Eng Securities
in Hong Kong said the Chinese figures were "nothing to be concerned over
but nothing to drive the market higher."
Japan's Nikkei 225 closed down 0.3
percent at 15,611.31. Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 0.3 percent to 23,744.19 while
China's Shanghai Composite was nearly unchanged at 2,237.49. South Korea's
Kospi shed 0.4 percent to 1,993.45.
Markets were also down in Singapore,
Philippines and Taiwan. Australia was steady and benchmarks rose in Indonesia
In energy trading, benchmark crude for
January delivery was up $1.02 to $98.36 a barrel in electronic trading on the
New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 31 cents to $97.34 on Monday.
The euro rose to $1.3747 from 1.3736
late Monday in New York. The dollar fell to 103.15 from 103.27 yen.