SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Global markets were mixed Wednesday while Japan's benchmark snapped a record winning streak with its first loss in 17 straight trading sessions. Investors are eyeing upcoming corporate earnings reports and U.S. politics for clues about the next Federal Reserve chair.
KEEPING SCORE: Britain's FTSE slipped 0.4 percent to 7,496.63 but France's CAC 40 added 0.1 percent to 5,401.58. Germany's DAX edged 0.1 percent lower to 12,999.02. Futures augured a weak start on Wall Street. S&P futures fell 0.2 percent to 2,562.60 while Dow futures shed 0.1 percent to 23,389.00.
ASIA'S DAY: Japan's was the only major Asian index in the red as investors locked in gains. The Nikkei 225 index lost 0.5 percent to 21,707.62. South Korea's Kospi added 0.1 percent to 2,492.50. Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.5 percent to 28,302.89. The Shanghai Composite Index climbed 0.3 percent to 3,396.90. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added 0.1 percent to 5,905.60. Shares in Taiwan, Singapore and other Southeast Asian countries were mostly in the black.
JAPAN'S WINNING STREAK ENDS: Profit-taking pressures prevailed with pharmaceutical and energy-related shares leading losses. It was the first daily loss for the Nikkei after 16 straight days of moderate gains — the longest since World War II — that had raised talk of a "bubble."
FED HEAD: President Donald Trump is polling Republican senators for advice as he nears a decision to name a new head of the Fed. Current Fed Chair Janet Yellen, Fed board member Jerome Powell and Stanford University economist John Taylor are among the candidates said to be under consideration.
ANALYST'S TAKE: "Markets are bracing for an announcement for the next Fed Chair soon," Mizuho Bank said in a daily commentary. Taylor advocates higher interest rates and his nomination would be perceived to be "a hawkish risk," it said.
EARNINGS: A slew of companies in the U.S. and in Asia are announcing their quarterly financial results this week and next week. South Korean panel supplier LG Display, a supplier to Apple, reported a 150 percent jump in its net income for the July-September quarter. Other tech and auto exporters in South Korea and Japan are due to report earnings, which would give better ideas about global demand for Asian export items and the pace of global recovery.
OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude shed 24 cents to $52.23 per barrel in electronic trading on New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract jumped 57 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $52.47 a barrel on Tuesday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, lost 17 cents to $58.16 per barrel in London. It surged 96 cents, or 1.7 percent, to finish at $58.33 a barrel on Tuesday.
CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 114.17 yen from 113.91 yen. The euro strengthened to $1.1767 from $1.1762.