Headline indices of the Japan share market were little changed on Friday, 12 July 2019, as risk sentiments muted on caution before for the release of domestic industrial production data for May and Chinese trade data, new loans and outstanding loan growth data for June to assess the impact of Beijing's ongoing trade war with Washington. Meanwhile, market was supported by comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, which boosted expectations for an interest-rate cut. Around late afternoon, the 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average was up 0.04%, or 9.60 points, to 21,653.15, while the broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange shed 0.16%, or 2.52 points, at 1,576.11.
Total 17 subsectors out of 33 subsectors of the Topix's index inclined, with Retail Trade, Fishery, Agriculture & Forestry, Insurance, Precision Instruments, and Warehousing & Harbor Transportation Services issues being notable gainers, while Mining, Pulp & Paper, Pharmaceutical, and Oil & Coal Products issues were notable losers.
U. S. stocks ended mixed on Thursday. The S&P 500 closed 0.2% higher at 2,999.91. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 227.88 points to close at 27,088.08, while the Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.1% to finish at 8,196.04.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, in his first day of testimony before Congress on Wednesday, confirmed the U.
S. economy was still under threat from disappointing factory activity, tame inflation and a simmering trade war and said the Fed stood ready to act as appropriate. Powell testified before the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday. Speaking during a second day of congressional testimony, Mr. Powell reiterated the Fed's intention to act as appropriate to sustain the expansion.
Although investors continue to disagree on how much the Fed will cut ratesopinions vary on whether the central bank will slash by a quarter of a percentage point or half of oneseveral said Mr. Powell's comments all but guarantee at least one rate cut as soon as this month.
Elsewhere, minutes from the European Central Bank's June policy meeting showed that officials are likely to consider injecting fresh stimulus into the eurozone in light of weak inflation data. The minutes suggest policy makers will weigh cutting the bank's key interest rate or restarting its 2.6 trillion ($2.92 trillion) bond-buying program.
CURRENCY NEWS: Japanese yen, often seen as a safe-haven currency, was tad softer against greenback on Friday. The Japanese yen traded at 108.37 against the dollar after weakening from levels below 108.0 in the previous session
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