Asian shares stumbled on Wednesday as the Sino-U.S. trade talks produced nothing but a stream of conflicting messages, while concerns about a glut of supply left oil prices nursing their biggest one-day loss in seven weeks.
Figures from the American Petroleum Institute out late Tuesday showed a far larger rise in crude stocks than expected. That followed reports Russia was unlikely to deepen its cuts to crude output. crude LCOc1 futures eased another 5 cents to $60.86 a barrel, after sliding 2.6% overnight, while U.S. crude CLc1 recouped a slight 8 cents to $55.29.
The mood in share markets was subdued with MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS off 0.7%. Japan’s Nikkei .N225 fell 0.8% and Shanghai blue chips .CSI300 0.3%.
E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 ESc1 shed 0.26% and EUROSTOXX 50 futures STXEc1 0.2%.
The prospect for progress on trade seemed to dim when China condemned a U.S. Senate measure on Hong Kong, vowing to take the steps necessary to safeguard its sovereignty and security.
The Senate unanimously passed legislation aimed at protecting human rights in Hong Kong. Tuesday, U.S. President Donald Trump had threatened to raise tariffs further if China would not agree to a deal that he liked. aggressive tone unsettled Wall Street and the Dow .DJI ended down 0.36%, while the S&P 500 .SPX lost 0.06% and the Nasdaq .IXIC added 0.24%.
Dour forecasts from retailers Home Depot (NYSE:HD) and Kohl’s fuelled worries about consumer spending, while the energy sector .SPNY was the S&P’s biggest loser as oil slid.