Log in

Global shares mixed amid 2nd wave virus, election fears

Friday, October 16, 2020 | Yuri Kageyama, AP Business Writer


A man stands near an electronic stock board showing Japan's Nikkei 225 index at a securities firm in Tokyo Friday, Oct. 16, 2020. Asian shares were mixed on Friday as investors weighed concerns about the U.S. presidential election and an economic stimulus package, on top of fears of flaring outbreaks of coronavirus. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)

TOKYO (AP) — Global shares were mixed on Friday as investors weighed concerns about the U.S. presidential election and an economic stimulus package, on top of flaring outbreaks of coronavirus.

France's CAC 40 jumped 1.2% in early trading to 4,896.78, while Germany's DAX gained 0.5% to 12,762.11. Britain's FTSE 100 added nearly 1.0% to 5,889.79. The future for the Dow industrials was virtually unchanged at 5,889.79. S&P 500 futures inched up less than 0.1% to 3,477.62.

Looking ahead, markets are awaiting the release of data on the Chinese economy next week.

Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 fell 0.4% to finish at 23,410.63. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 shed 0.5% to 6,176.80. South Korea's Kospi declined 0.8% to 2,341.53. Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.9% to 24,386.79, while the Shanghai Composite edged 0.1% higher to 3,336.36.

Markets have turned cautious this week amid a confluence of worrisome trends amid the pandemic. Coronavirus infections are rising in Europe, prompting governments in France and Britain to impose new measures to contain the outbreak. Caseloads area also climbing in the Americas and parts of Asia.

In the U.S., investor optimism that the Trump administration and Congress will soon reach a deal on another round of stimulus for the economy has waned.

“The markets’ on again off again love affair with an impending stimulus torrent masks the fact that investor uncertainty is bristling ahead of an expected choppy period in terms of headline risk,” Stephen Innes of Axi said in a commentary.

Meanwhile, campaign theatrics continue, with the latest question whether the debate scheduled next week between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joseph Biden will go ahead as planned. The clash planned for this week was called off after Trump's bout of coronavirus. Biden has said he plans to participate in next week’s debate but intends to ask Trump to take a COVID-19 test before arriving.

Investors are also watching for earnings reports for indications of how businesses are holding up amid the pandemic. Rising COVID-19 cases may bring more social distancing restrictions and limits on public life, including a possible return to lockdowns that are damaging to growth.

In energy trading, benchmark U.S. crude lost 28 cents to $40.68 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It gave up 8 cents on Thursday to $40.96. Brent crude, the international standard, fell 37 cents to $42.79 a barrel.

The U.S. dollar stood at 105.24 Japanese yen, down from 105.42 yen late Thursday. The euro cost $1.1715, little changed from $1.1710.

8 Artificial Intelligence Stocks That Will Make You Feel Like a Smart Investor

In 2018, it was cannabis. In 2019, it was 5G. And yet before either of those trends, artificial intelligence (or AI) was growing relentlessly and undeniably.

Artificial intelligence stems from the simple fact that computers are getting smarter. And they are being designed to process information faster. The words “machine learning” are being used to summarize the creation of algorithms, freed from human programmers, which train themselves on massive data sets. Earlier this year, two separate artificial intelligence “machines” demonstrated the ability to “read” Wikipedia entries and answer questions better than humans did.

But AI is more than a parlor trick. Chances are at some point today, you’ve experienced a benefit of artificial intelligence. You may have gotten to this page because of an internet search. You may have asked Alexa or your Google Assistant to perform a command. You may have voice-activated your Roomba vacuum. You may have used an AI-powered GPS system to get to wherever you’re reading this.

In the future, you may be hailing an autonomous car. A virtual assistant will be able to place calls for you to make appointments. But instead of sounding like a robot, the assistant will sound human, with an understanding of context and nuance. And those are just two applications. There will be more because the possibilities of artificial intelligence are expansive. But they can also be somewhat chilling. Many of the functions that are performed by humans today may be made obsolete by AI. But that’s a subject for another day.

Right now, you want to know how you can profit from this emerging trend.

You’ve come to the right place. In this special presentation, we will take a look at 8 stocks that can help you profit from the artificial intelligence trend.

View the "8 Artificial Intelligence Stocks That Will Make You Feel Like a Smart Investor".

Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of analysts' upgrades, downgrades and new coverage with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.