Asian Stocks Extend Weekly Drop as Earnings Disappoint
Asian stocks fell, extending the regional gauge’s biggest weekly decline since August, as forecasts from Canon Inc. to Posco disappointed investors.
Canon retreated 1.6 percent in Tokyo as the camera maker trimmed its earnings outlook. Posco, South Korea’s biggest steelmaker, slipped 0.5 percent in Seoul after cutting its 2013 sales forecast. LG Electronics Inc. (066570) lost 3.4 percent after its third-quarter operating profit and sales missed estimates. AMP Ltd. tumbled 2.8 percent in Sydney after Australia’s largest life insurer and pension manager said fourth-quarter operating profit will fall by as much as A$65 million ($62.5 million).
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index sank 1.1 percent to 141.4 at 7:49 p.m. in Tokyo, extending this week’s drop to 1.4 percent. Of 87 companies in the measure that have reported quarterly results this earnings season and for which Bloomberg compiles estimates, 57 percent posted profit that missed expectations. The yen is poised for a second-straight weekly advance.
“The earnings numbers are not fantastic,” Evan Lucas, Melbourne-based market strategist at IG Ltd. said by phone. “Many of the export-driven Japanese companies like Canon had the weakening yen supporting them earlier in the year but that is now stagnating. People are starting to reassess those shares that have had that support.”
Japan’s Topix index today fell 2.1 percent, the biggest retreat in more than two months. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 0.3 percent and New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index advanced 0.6 percent. South Korea’s Kospi index dropped 0.6 percent even after data showed the nation’s economy expanded more than forecast last quarter. Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index slipped 0.1 percent.
Fed policy makers are scheduled to meet Oct. 29-30, when they will evaluate the strength of the recovery with a less complete set of figures than usual due to the 16-day partial government shutdown that caused the suspension of reports and collection of data.
Japanese consumer prices climbed in September from a year earlier, a fourth monthly gain. The Topix surged 37 percent this year, the largest rally among 24 developed equity markets tracked by Bloomberg.
Posco lost 0.5 percent to 320,000 won and LG Electronics retreated 3.4 percent to 67,700 won. Canon declined 1.6 percent to 3,080 yen and AMP slumped 2.8 percent to A$4.80. Great Wall Motor Co. sank 7 percent to HK$45.05 in Hong Kong after its third-quarter profit missed analysts’ estimates.
Among rising shares, Murata Manufacturing Co. gained 2.2 percent to 7,760 yen after net income topped the electronic-component maker’s forecasts.
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