Asian shares to slide on U.S. econ fears

WELLINGTON (BestGrowthStock) – Asian stocks are set to fall on Friday as poor U.S. data rekindled fears the world’s largest economy is close to stalling.

The main U.S. indexes fell between 1.4 percent and 1.7 percent, with companies sensitive to the economy hardest hit. Manufacturers 3M (MMM.N: ), United Technologies (UTX.N: ), and Boeing (BA.N: ) were among the biggest falls.

A rise in jobless claims to a nine-month high and a report showing factory activity in mid-Atlantic states declined for the first time in more than a year spooked investors, who moved to safer havens such as U.S. Treasuries (US/: ) and gold (GOL/: ).

Volume was light, as it has been for the past several weeks, with institutional investors cautious about taking positions in the face of continuing economic uncertainty.

Asian stocks listed on Wall Street (.BKAS: ) closed 0.34 percent lower.

British (.FTSE: ) shares slipped 1.7 percent and European (.FTEU3: ) shares fell 1.4 percent, with oil stocks down on weaker crude prices (O/R: ), while the weak U.S. data also hit sentiment.

The U.S. dollar was near a 15-year low against the yen as investors favor the Japanese currency as a safer bet, while the shift away from riskier assets saw the euro fall.

The stronger currency will hit Japanese markets, with Nikkei futures traded in Chicago were 135 points below the last closing level in Osaka.

Australian shares are seen opening sharply lower, with share index futures 67 points lower at 4,387, a 92 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: ) -0.34

Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI: ) -1.39

Nasdaq Composite Index (.IXIC: ) -1.66

Nikkei futures in Chicago 9,225

Nikkei futures in Osaka 9,360

TOP ASIA EVENTS:

For more Asian company earnings, see ASIA/EQTY

JAPAN – Crude steel output for July

AUSTRALIA – ANZ (ANZ.AX: ) quarterly update

– Speech by RBA Deputy Governor Battellino

HONG KONG – Datang International Power Generation Co Ltd

(0991.HK: ) H1 results news conference

– China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (0386.HK: ) H1 results

– China Construction Bank Corporation (0939.HK: )

H1 results

– Parkson Retail Group Ltd (3368.HK: ) H1 results

– Wynn Macau Ltd (1128.HK: ) H1 results

– Yanzhou Coal Mining Co Ltd (1171.HK: ) H1 results

(Reporting by Adrian Bathgate)

Asian shares to slide on U.S. econ fears