Asian shares set for cautious start

WELLINGTON (BestGrowthStock) – Asian stocks are likely to open flat on Thursday, weighed down by BHP’s (BHP.AX: ) bid for Potash Corp (POT.TO: ) turning hostile and a mixed performance from global markets.

The main U.S. indexes gained between 0.1 percent and 0.3 percent, as an upbeat view of the retailing sector eased concerns about consumer demand and provided a boost for the market for the second day in a row.

Chain-store Target Corp (TGT.N: ) rose 2.5 percent as it made an upbeat forecast for same store sales, a day after Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT.N: ) and Home Depot Inc (HD.N: ) both reported results above expectations.

Asian stocks listed on Wall Street (.BKAS: ) closed 0.07 percent higher.

British (.FTSE: ) shares slipped 0.9 percent and European (.FTEU3: ) shares fell 0.3 percent, with the heavyweight sectors of resources, commodities and banks all lower.

BHP Billiton (BLT.L: ) (BHP.AX: ) fell 3.4 percent in London trade after announcing it would take its $39 billion bid for Canadian fertilizer group Potash (PTO.TO: ) directly to shareholders.

The euro fell (Read more about the trembling euro. ) against the U.S. dollar after failing to hold a key technical level. The dollar fell against the yen on growing speculation that Japanese authorities are unlikely to intervene to counter the currency’s recent strength.

The stronger currency will work against Japanese markets, which are pointing toward a flat start. Nikkei futures traded in Chicago were 10 points below the last closing level in Osaka.

Australian shares are seen opening weaker, with share index futures 9 points lower at 4,455, a 19.9 point discount to the close of the underlying S&P/ASX 200 (.AXJO: ) index.

KEY INDEXES pct change

Bank of New York Asia ADR index (.BKAS: ) -0.07

Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI: ) +0.09

Nasdaq Composite Index (.IXIC: ) +0.28

Nikkei futures in Chicago 9,230

Nikkei futures in Osaka 9,240


For more Asian company earnings, see ASIA/EQTY

AUSTRALIA – Brambles (BXB.AX: ) FY results

– AMP H1 (AMP.AX: ) results

– Wesfarmers (WES.AX: ) FY results

– ASX (ASX.AX: ) FY results

– QBE (QBE.AX: ) FY results

HONG KONG – China Mobile Ltd (0941.HK: ) H1 results news


– CNOOC Ltd (0883.HK: ) H1 results news conference

– Datang International Power Generation Co Ltd

(0991.HK: ) H1 results

– Lenovo Group Ltd (0992.HK: ) Q1 results media


– Shui On Land Ltd (0272.HK: ) H1 results

– ZTE Corporation (0763.HK: ) H1 results

(Reporting by Adrian Bathgate)

Asian shares set for cautious start