Last week, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite had a tough time as they both experienced losses. The S&P 500 lost about 0.2% while the Nasdaq Composite dropped by 0.4%. This marked the second consecutive week of losses for both indexes. On the other hand, the Dow managed to make a narrow gain of around 0.1%.
In European markets, stocks opened lower at the start of the week’s trading. This followed the trend set by their Asia-Pacific counterparts, which were also in negative territory. Investors are keeping a close eye on central bank decisions that are expected to take place this week. The pan-European Stoxx 600 index opened 0.2% lower, with a mix of positive and negative performances across different sectors. Mining stocks led the gains with a 0.3% increase, while household goods were down 0.5%.
Chinese real estate developer Evergrande saw its shares tumble more than 20% after some staff from its wealth management unit were detained by the police over the weekend. These developments have added further concerns and uncertainties to the already beleaguered company. Evergrande’s shares did recover slightly later in the session, gaining 1.61% compared to its previous close.
Japanese investment holding company, SoftBank, is reportedly planning to invest “tens of billions” into artificial intelligence. SoftBank is considering various options, including a potential investment in or strategic partnership with Microsoft-backed OpenAI. The company is also exploring investment opportunities in other AI-related ventures. SoftBank has declined to comment on the rumors, while AI chipmaker Graphcore denied receiving an offer from SoftBank.
Singapore’s non-oil domestic exports have declined for the 11th consecutive month, falling by 20.1% year on year. This drop was larger than the 15.8% decline forecasted by economists. However, it was slightly less severe than the 20.3% decline recorded in July. Both imports and exports in Singapore fell, with a 15.6% drop in imports and a 14.7% drop in exports. Total trade in Singapore declined by 15.2% year on year.
The technology sector faced losses last week, with the Technology Select Sector SPDR Fund losing 2.2%. Oracle, a leading technology company, suffered the most significant losses, falling nearly 10% after missing revenue expectations. Other technology companies such as chipmaker KLA Corporation and Monolithic Power Systems also experienced declines. Conversely, the utilities sector saw the largest weekly gains, with the Utilities Select Sector SPDR Fund adding 2.8%.
Looking ahead, U.S. stock futures opened flat on Sunday evening. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures added 17 points, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures had slight increases as well.
Overall, it is clear that there is caution in the markets as investors monitor various factors, including central bank decisions, company-specific news, and economic indicators. The performance of stock indexes and individual sectors will continue to be closely watched in the coming weeks.