By JOE McDONALD, AP Business Writer
BEIJING (AP) — Asian stock markets gained on Wednesday after Wall Street slumped on weak U.S. home sales and a profit warning from a top social media brand.
Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seoul advanced while Tokyo declined. Oil prices rose more than $1 a barrel to stay above $110.
Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index lost 0.8% after Snapchat’s parent company Tuesday’s profit warning. Frightened investors dumped social media stocks. Construction inventories tumbled after U.S. home sales tumbled in April.
“The overall mood in stock markets remains largely pessimistic,” IG’s Jun Rong Yeap said in a report.
The Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.8% to 3,094.88 while the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo lost less than 0.1% to 26,729.70. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong gained 0.5% to 20,216.79.
Seoul’s Kospi rose 0.8% to 2,626.90 and Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 added 0.7% to 7,177.80.
The Indian Sensex opened less than 0.1% at 54,099.64. New Zealand, Singapore and Jakarta fell while Bangkok advanced.
Investors are nervous about the impact of interest rate hikes in the United States and other Western economies to curb soaring inflation, as well as Russia’s war on Ukraine and to the Chinese economic slowdown.
On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve is due to provide insight into its decision-making by releasing minutes from its latest policy meeting.
On Wall Street, the S&P 500 fell to 3,941.48 on Tuesday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.2% to 31,928.62.
The S&P is down 18% from its peak on Jan. 3, putting it on the verge of a bear market, down 20% from the previous peak.
The Nasdaq composite, dominated by tech stocks, fell 2.3% to 11,264.45 after the social media selloff. Snap fell 43.1%, its biggest one-day drop on record. Facebook’s parent company, Meta, fell 7.6%. Google’s parent company fell 5.1%.
Retailers and businesses that rely on direct consumer spending have shrunk. Amazon slipped 3.2% and Target fell 2.6%.
The pullback undermined the broad rally the day before.
Homebuilders fell following a government report showing that in April, sales of newly built homes fell 26.9% from a year earlier. KB Home fell 2.7%.
Cruise lines and other travel-related businesses suffered heavy losses. Carnival fell 10.3% and Norwegian Cruise Line 12%.
In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude rose $1.35 to $111.12 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 52 cents on Tuesday to $109.77. Brent crude, the price basis for international oil trade, advanced $1.32 to $112.01 a barrel in London. It was up 14 cents the previous session at $113.56.
The dollar gained 126.99 yen from 126.82 yen on Tuesday. The euro fell from $1.0693 to $1.0709.
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