International markets roundup
Market watch top headlines
A roundup of trading on major world markets:
NEW YORK - Apple's plunge on disappointing earnings pulled the Nasdaq lower in opening trade.
Five minutes into trade on Thursday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 34.79 points, or 0.25 per cent, to 13,814.12.
The broad-based S&P 500 up 0.56 point, or 0.04 per cent, to 1,495.37.
But the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite fell 22.12 points, or 0.70 per cent, to 3,131.55.
Apple, the biggest US company by market capitalisation, disappointed the market with below-expected revenues and a middling outlook on upcoming revenues. Its shares were off 11.4 per cent.
On the positive side, US jobless claims came in well below expectations, an unexpectedly strong result for the second week in a row.
LONDON - European stock markets climbed and the euro gained against the US dollar as traders welcomed positive economic data from China, the eurozone and the US, although Apple shares crumbled on Wall Street.
London's FTSE 100 index of top companies jumped by 1.09 per cent to close at 6,264.91 points on Thursday, Frankfurt's DAX 30 added 0.53 per cent to 7,748.13 points and Paris's CAC 40 won 0.70 per cent to 3,752.17.
The euro climbed to $US1.3375 from $US1.3315 late on Wednesday in New York.
HONG KONG - Asian markets closed mixed despite a positive lead from Wall Street and news that Chinese manufacturing activity hit a two-year high in January.
The yen retreated after a two-day rally as Japan logged a record trade deficit for 2012, with exports hit by the ongoing territorial spat with China and Europe's long-running debt crisis.
Tokyo reversed early losses thanks to the yen's dip, with the Nikkei up 1.28 per cent, or 133.88 points, at 10,620.87 at the close on Thursday. Sydney rose 0.47 per cent, or 22.4 points, to 4,810.2, but Seoul shed 0.8 per cent, or 15.93 points, to 1,964.48.
Shanghai fell 0.79 per cent, or 18.31 points, to 2,302.6, with profit-takers moving in after the index hit an eight-month high in intra-day trade. Hong Kong shed 0.15 per cent, or 36.20 points, to 23,598.9.
In China HSBC said its preliminary purchasing managers index (PMI) rose to 51.9 in January from 51.5 in December, its highest since January 2011.
WELLINGTON - The NZX50 Index of leading stocks rose 2.19 points, or 0.52 per cent, to 4,189.914.