TOKYO — Stock markets were mixed Thursday, with Europe mostly falling but Asian shares advancing, as investors digest bank earnings and a lack of progress in Brexit talks.
KEEPING SCORE: France's CAC 40 lost 0.3 percent to 5,347 while Germany's DAX slipped 0.1 percent to 12,962. Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.4 percent to 7,560 mainly due to a drop in the pound. U.S. shares were set to drift lower with Dow futures inching down 0.1 percent and S&P 500 futures 0.2 percent lower at 2,549.
BREXIT: The European Union's Brexit negotiator said that talks with Britain about its departure had made no significant progress. The sides are discussing the country's divorce issues, including its exit bill, before moving onto future trade relations. The comments weighed on the pound, which was down 0.6 percent at $1.3146. That automatically pushes up the FTSE 100, which is dominated by global companies whose revenue outside the U.K. is boosted by a fall in the pound.
EARNINGS: JPMorgan Chase said its third-quarter profits rose 7 percent as it was able to increase revenue in consumer banking even though it set aside additional funds to cover bad loans. The results beat analysts' expectations. Citigroup earnings are due later.
ASIA'S DAY: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 added 0.4 percent to finish at 20,954.72. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.4 percent to 5,794.50. South Korea's Kospi rose 0.7 percent to 2,474.76. Hong Kong's Hang Seng advanced 0.3 percent to 28,472.66, while the Shanghai Composite dipped 0.1 percent to 3,386.10.Comment on this story
JAPAN RALLY: Japan's Nikkei 225 index has closed at 21 year highs over the past few days, lifted by optimism over the latest economic data and anticipation of strong corporate results in the upcoming quarterly reporting period. Expectations are rising that an Oct. 22 nationwide election for the more powerful lower house of Parliament will reinforce a strong majority for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling Liberal Democrats, who favor tax cuts for corporations.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude oil lost 80 cents to $50.50 a barrel. It rose 38 cents to $51.30 a barrel overnight in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, fell 74 cents to $56.20 a barrel in London.
CURRENCIES: The dollar was little changed, at 112.26 yen. The euro rose to $1.1861 from $1.1819.