Global stocks mixed amid strong corporate earnings

By YOUKYUNG LEE Markets Associated Press

Global stock markets were mixed Wednesday amid another string of strong corporate earnings reports and as investors keep an eye out for news about the next U.S. Federal Reserve chair.

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KEEPING SCORE: Britain's FTSE 100 slipped 0.5 percent to 7,492 after the country's economic growth was reported to be slightly strong than expected in the third quarter. That is more likely to lead to an interest rate increase next month. France's CAC 40 added 0.2 percent to 5,406 and Germany's DAX edged 0.1 percent lower to 13,003. Futures augured a weak start on Wall Street. S&P and Dow futures both shed 0.1 percent.

EARNINGS: Coca-Cola, payments company Visa and plane maker Boeing all reported earnings above analysts' expectations. South Korean panel supplier LG Display, a supplier to Apple, said its net income rose 150 percent jump and drugs maker GSK saw its sales rise 4 percent. Their results add to mostly upbeat reports from major U.S., European and Asian companies for the third quarter, reinforcing views that developed economies are powering ahead.

FED HEAD: President Donald Trump is polling Republican senators for advice as he nears a decision to name a new chair 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.

ASIA'S DAY: Japan's was the only major Asian index in the red as investors locked in gains. The Nikkei 225 index fell 0.5 percent to 21,707.62, the first daily loss after 16 straight days of moderate gains — the longest run since World War II. 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.

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OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude shed 18 cents to $52.29 per barrel in electronic trading on New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract jumped 57 cents on Tuesday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose 3 cents to $58.36 per barrel in London. It surged 96 cents on Tuesday.

CURRENCIES: The pound was the biggest mover in currency markets, jumping over a cent to $1.3250 on increased expectations of an interest rate increase next month. The dollar rose to 114.16 yen from 113.91 yen. The euro strengthened to $1.1778 from $1.1762.