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BREAKING NEWS

Kim promises to visit Seoul in near future

World shares track Wall St weakness, eyes on Fed comment

A currency trader gestures at the foreign exchange dealing room of the KEB Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul, South Korea, on Aug. 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

BANGKOK (AP) -- World shares were mixed Friday after a listless session on Wall Street, where a slide in banks and industrial companies offset solid gains for the technology sector. A lack of progress in trade talks between the U.S. and China was weighing on sentiment.

    KEEPING SCORE: Germany's DAX edged less than 0.1 percent higher to 12,371.64 and the FTSE 100 in Britain was unchanged, at 7,562.97. In France, the CAC 40 rose 0.2 percent to 5,427.83. Wall Street was poised for gains, with the futures contracts for the Dow Jones industrial average and the S&P 500 both gained 0.2 percent.

    THE DAY IN ASIA: Japan's Nikkei 225 stock index jumped 0.9 percent to 22,601.77 and Australia's S&P ASX 200 edged 0.1 percent higher to 6,247.30 with a change of its prime minister. The Kospi in South Korea rose 0.5 percent to 2,293.21 while the Shanghai Composite index reversed early losses to gain 0.2 percent to 2,729.32. Hong Kong's Hang Seng lost 0.4 percent to 27,671.87. Shares were lower in Taiwan and Southeast Asia.

    TRADE: Investors had their eye on the latest developments in the U.S.-China trade dispute as both nations ended their first high-level talks in two months with no sign of progress in breaking their deadlock. Markets showed little reaction to the latest round of dueling tariffs between the U.S. and China. The countries imposed 25 percent tariffs on $16 billion of each other's goods Thursday, including automobiles and factory equipment. The increases were announced previously.

    AUSSIE SHAKEUP: Shares rose marginally after Australia's ruling party chose Treasurer Scott Morrison to become the next prime minister. Morrison is replacing Malcolm Turnbull, who resigned. Friday's ballot among Liberal Party lawmakers means Australia's sixth change of prime minister in 11 years, prolonging an era of extraordinary political instability. Morrison was regarded as the best economic manager among the candidates to replace Turnbull.

    FED TALK: Traders were looking ahead to Friday's gathering of central bankers, including Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, an annual symposium that has often generated market-moving news. "It's been a fairly quiet day," said Paul Springmeyer, head of investments at U.S. Bank Wealth Management. "There's obviously some reservation about what's going to come out from Jackson Hole, from Chairman Powell."

    ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude gained 62 cents to $68.45 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It lost 3 cents to $68.83 on Thursday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, advanced 56 cents to $75.30 per barrel.

    CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 111.43 yen from 111.26 yen late Thursday. The euro strengthened to $1.1561 from $1.1539.

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