An investor walks in front of trading boards at a private stock market gallery in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2018. Most Asian stock markets rose Tuesday after Wall Street declined as Turkey’s central bank struggled to contain a currency crisis that is feeding fears about other emerging markets. (AP Photo/Yam G-Jun)

Global markets stabilize as Turkey jitters ease

August 14, 2018 - 8:16 am

BEIJING (AP) — Most global stock markets steadied Tuesday as worries subsided over Turkey's currency crisis and its potential impact on other countries.

KEEPING SCORE: Germany's DAX rose 0.2 percent to 12,376 and France's CAC 40 was up less than 0.1 percent to 5,414 after economic growth figures for the eurozone were revised up. London's FTSE 100 shed 0.2 percent to 7,628. On Wall Street, futures for the Standard & Poor's 500 index and Dow Jones industrial average were up 0.3 percent.

ASIA'S DAY: The Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.2 percent to 2,780.96 while Tokyo's Nikkei 225 added 2.3 percent to 22,356.08. Hong Kong's Hang Seng declined 0.7 percent to 27,752.93 and Seoul's Kospi advanced 0.5 percent to 2,258.91. Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 advanced 0.8 percent to 6,299.60 and India's Sensex added 0.6 percent to 33,751.22. Benchmarks in Taiwan, New Zealand and Southeast Asia also advanced.

TURKISH TURMOIL: Turkey's lira stabilized near record lows amid hopes that Turkey is in talks with the U.S. to ease tensions between the sides. Turkey's central bank also earlier announced measures to help its banks, but economists say that what's needed is an interest rate increase of several percentage points. The lira is down over 40 percent this year as investors question whether President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government can cope with problems including a diplomatic spat with Washington that has resulted in higher U.S. tariffs. Erdogan has ruled out an interest rate hike, which can slow economic growth, but analysts say one is urgently needed to stabilize the currency.

CONTAGION FEARS: Emerging markets had fallen Monday on concern that Turkey's turmoil could highlight similar problems in their economies. The Argentine peso and India's rupee hit a record low against the dollar. But those jitters eased somewhat later Tuesday.

ANALYST'S TAKE: Asian markets were "relatively more resilient" to Turkey jitters than South Africa and Latin America were, said Philip Wee and Radikha Rao of DBS Group in a report. But they said the U.S. tariff hike on Turkish steel at a time of "considerable stress" tells emerging economies not to expect Washington's help to calm their markets. "Expect more stress if the Fed continues to look past the emerging market turmoil (like it did in May) and keeps to gradual rate hike path," they said.

CHINA COOLING: Growth in factory output, consumer spending and retail sales in July were weaker than expected, adding to signs of an economic slowdown. Factory output rose 6 percent over a year earlier, in line with the previous month but below forecasts. Retail sales gained 8.8 percent, down from June's 9 percent. Investment in factories and other fixed assets grew 5.5 percent in the first seven months of the year, down from 5.7 percent in the year to June. Forecasters have expected economic growth to decline since regulators tightened lending controls last year to rein in surging debt.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude gained 89 cents to $68.09 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, added $1.03 to $73.64 per barrel in London.

CURRENCY: The dollar gained to 110.81 yen from Monday's 110.73 yen. The euro declined to $1.1406 from $1.1411.

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