US stocks fell on Friday led by financial sector as JPMorgan Chase reported heavy fourth-quarter losses on mortgage and credit card loans. Shares in Intel also declined despite it reported a biggest gross profit margin in its history, as investors grew fearful that the stock may be near its peak. For the week, Dow index fell 8.54 points, or 0.08%.
Baoshan Iron & Steel Co., Ltd.
Asian stocks markets were mostly higher on Wednesday. The Japanese market was buoyed by the positive machinery orders data, and the U.S. dollar dropped sharply against the yen after the data. World Bank President Robert Zoellick said on a conference in Singapore today that the US dollar's role as a reserve currency is intact, but the Chinese yuan could provide an alternative in the next 10-15 years.
The nickel price is expected to rebound by about 9 per cent in 2010 as China's stainless steel market shows some signs of recovery, according to Minara Resources Ltd (ASX:MRE) chief executive Peter Johnston.
On Friday Asian markets closed mixed in a volatile trading session. Japan's Nikkei 225 Average climbed 1.5%, while South Korea's Kospi rose 0.8%. China's Shanghai Composite was down 1.8% and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 0.7%. Tokyo stocks slid more than 3 percent on Monday after the news that U.S. government will take a large stake in Citigroup. South Korean stocks also made a weak start today, weighed down by the deepening financial jitters and the weakening local currency.
Asian markets are expected to be flat today before the US stimulus package is unveiled. Yesterday the major indexes in Asia closed mixed with Shanghai and Hong Kong extended the rising after China's stimulus plan announced last week, while Tokyo and Seoul declined.