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Japanese, Australia Stock Futures Fall on Greece, Apple Earnings

Japanese and Australian stock futures dropped as Greece’s creditors met to assess how far the debt-stricken nation has strayed from bailout terms. Shares of Apple Inc. suppliers may be active after the most valuable company fell in after-hours trading on disappointing results.

American depositary receipts of Canon Inc., the world’s biggest camera maker that gets 31 percent of its revenue in Europe, lost 1.2 percent from the closing share price in Tokyo. Losses in Japanese exporters may be limited on a report the Federal Reserve is moving closer to taking new steps to spur growth. Samsung Electronics Co., South Korea’s biggest exporter of consumer electronics, and Taiwan’s Pegatron Corp. may pace moves among Apple suppliers. ADRs of BHP Billiton Ltd., Australia’s biggest mining company, slid 1.1 percent after metal prices fell.

Futures on Japan’s Nikkei 225 Stock Average expiring in September closed at 8,390 in Chicago yesterday, down from 8,470 in Osaka, Japan. They were bid in the pre-market at 8,370 in Osaka, at 8:05 a.m. local time. September futures on Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index dropped 0.8 percent today. New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index lost 0.2 percent in Wellington.

“Signals coming out of Greece are not positive in terms of implementing agreements, and so Europe is going to remain a key negative for markets for quite some time to come,” said Stephen Halmarick, Sydney-based head of investment markets research at Colonial First State Global Asset Management, which oversees about $150 billion. “The outlook remains very difficult for major economies and therefore for equity markets.”

Apple Earnings

Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index fell 0.5 percent today as Apple’s profit and sales missed projections for only the second time since 2003 as customers held off on iPhone purchases while waiting for a new model to be introduced later in the year.

The S&P index dropped 0.9 percent in New York yesterday, as Greece Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is scheduled to meet with European Commission President Jose Barroso in Athens this week before seeing the “troika” of officials representing the euro area, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund on July 27.

Stocks pared losses earlier after the Wall Street Journal reported that the Fed is moving closer to taking new steps to spur economic growth. Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke last week said policy makers are studying options for further easing that could be deployed in case economic growth remains too feeble to produce a lasting decline in unemployment.

The London Metal Exchange Index of prices for six industrial metals including copper and aluminum fell 0.2 percent yesterday.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index fell about 12 percent from this year’s high on Feb. 29 through yesterday amid concern China’s economy is slowing and Europe’s sovereign-debt crisis will worsen. The regional benchmark index traded at 11.6 times estimated earnings as of yesterday, compared with 13 for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index and 10.5 for the Stoxx Europe 600 Index, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The Bloomberg China-US Equity Index of the most-traded Chinese shares in the U.S. rose 0.4 percent to 84.63 yesterday in New York.

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