Asian stocks grapple with trade anxiety
TOKYO, May 22: Asian stocks struggled for traction on Wednesday, as relief over Washington's temporary relaxation of curbs against China's Huawei Technologies failed to offset deeper worries about an intensifying trade war between the world's two largest economies.
In opening European trade, the pan-region Euro Stoxx 50 futures were down 0.03per cent, Germany's DAX futures were up 0.01per cent and Britain's FTSE futures were up 0.28per cent.
The Chinese markets, which have endured a volatile few months, were on a cautious note. The Shanghai Composite Index was last a fraction lower.
Australian stocks were flat and South Korea's KOSPI edged up 0.2per cent. Japan's Nikkei added 0.1per cent.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan moved in and out of the red and was last 0.1per cent higher.
"Some in the markets will continue to cling on to hopes of the United States and China reaching an agreement at the upcoming G20 meeting," said Masahiro Ichikawa, senior strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui DS Asset Management.
"But the ongoing trade conflict looks to be a protracted one, and its potentially negative impact on various economies is becoming a running concern." -Reuters