World stock markets were listless Monday as investors look to a raft of economic data this week and as holidays in several key markets crimped trading volume.
KEEPING SCORE: In Europe, France’s CAC 40 dipped 0.1 percent to 5,329, while Germany’s DAX edged up by less than 0.1 percent to 12,606. Markets in Britain and the United states were closed for holidays.
GLOBAL OUTLOOK: A full slate of economic reports this week will give investors plenty to digest, beginning with eurozone business and consumer confidence readings on Tuesday. China’s latest official factory and service industry purchasing managers’ indexes, out Wednesday, will be among the most watched, with analysts looking to see if the gauge indicates that manufacturing growth momentum slows further. The ISM index for U.S. manufacturing is due a day later. U.S. private and official payroll numbers are also scheduled for release. They’ll give fresh clues on employment and hiring in the world’s No. 1 economy and could bolster Fed policymakers’ reasoning as they prepare to gradually raise interest rates again.
MARKET TALK: “Muted market action on Friday night, holidays in the U.K. and U.S. tonight and a data deluge starting tomorrow all militate against major market moves,” said Michael McCarthy, chief strategist at CMC Markets. “Investors and trader may hold out for important reads on the world’s largest economies this week.”
ASIA’S DAY: Stock indexes in the region drifted between losses and gains. Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 index ended a fraction lower at 19,682.57, and South Korea’s Kospi dipped 0.1 percent to 2,352.97. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.2 percent to 25,701.63, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.8 percent to 5,707.10. Markets in mainland China and Taiwan were closed for holidays.
ENERGY: Oil futures retreated after their bounce at the end of last week. Benchmark U.S. crude dipped 7 cents to $49.73 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 90 cents on Friday. Brent crude, the international standard, slipped 5 cents to $52.10 a barrel in London.
CURRENCIES: The dollar climbed to 111.34 yen from 111.32. The euro edged up to $1.1188 from $1.1185.