shares mixed in global markets in calm holiday trading | Economic news

By JOE McDONALD, AP Business Writer

BEIJING (AP) – Global stocks were mixed in calm trading on Friday, with many markets around the world closing or ending early for Christmas.

Shares fell in Paris and Tokyo, edged up in Seoul and Hong Kong, and remained virtually unchanged in London. Financial markets have taken a break in the United States, Germany and many other countries as another powerful year for stocks draws to a close.

A day earlier, Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 rose 0.6% to set a record as investor fears faded over the impact of the omicron variant on the economy. Authorities have said the coronavirus variant could cause less severe illness, and President Joe Biden has called for more vaccinations and testing, but has not announced any plans for travel restrictions.

Omicron looks like a “short-term disruption” instead of a “destructive headwind that turns the economy off course,” Oanda’s Edward Moya said in a report. “The US economic recovery in 2022 still looks very strong.”

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Of course, much is still unclear about the omicron, which appears to be spreading extremely quickly. Several major airlines on Friday canceled dozens of flights because many of their employees were sick.

In Asia, Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 fell 0.1%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.1%, and Seoul’s Kospi fell 0.5%. Shares in Shanghai fell 0.7%.

In Europe, the French CAC 40 fell 0.3% and the London FTSE 100 lost less than 0.1%.

The surge in omicron cases weighed on investors as they tried to assess the impact on corporate earnings in 2022. Governments in Asia and Europe have tightened travel controls or pushed back. plans to ease restrictions already in place.

Inflation, meanwhile, is at a nearly four-decade high in the United States. This prompted the Federal Reserve to speed up the withdrawal of the economic stimulus that pushed up stock prices.

In energy markets, the price of Brent crude oil rose 71 cents to $ 76.14.

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