SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Asian stock markets mostly retreated on Tuesday despite gains on Wall Street overnight, as investor sentiment was dampened by a downbeat reading of China's services industries.
KEEPING SCORE: Japan'sNikkei 225 fell 0.6 percent to 15,439.98 and South Korea's Kospi was down 0.5 percent to 2,071.15. Hong Kong's Hang Seng dipped 0.1 percent to 24,572.63 and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 slipped 0.3 percent to 5,523.8. China's Shanghai Composite dropped 0.4 percent to 2,213.61.
WEAK CHINESE SERVICE: China's service industries grew at the slowest rate last month since November 2005. The HSBC index based on a survey of 400 companies fell to 50.0 in July from 53.1 in the previous month, official news agency Xinhua said. The weak figure shows the impact of a slowdown in China's property market, said HSBC chief China economist Qu Hongbin, according to Xinhua.
ANALYST TAKE: "The positive momentum from U.S. trade has not translated into gains for Asia, with the major bourses struggling on the back of an alarming China HSBC services PMI reading," said Stan Shamu, an analyst at IG. "With recent manufacturing reports showing activity was expanding, it is disappointing to see services decline sharply. "
PORTUGAL WORRIES: Worries over the collapse of a major Portuguese financial institution have eased after Portugal's central bank said on Sunday it will rescue the ailing Banco Espirito Santo. The share price of the Banco Espirito Santo was wiped out by 75 percent last week and it was a main reason that the European shares sank last week.
WALL STREET: U.S. stock markets gained solidly on Monday after Berkshire Hathaway released a decent earnings report and the announcement of a rescue plan for Banco Espirito Santo eased jitters. But investors remained cautious after last week's sell-off. The Dow rose 75.91 points, or 0.5 percent, to 16,569.28. It's the first time the blue chip index has posted a gain since July 28. The Standard & Poor's 500 rose 13.84 points, or 0.7 percent, to 1,938.99 and the Nasdaq composite added 31.25 points, or 0.7 percent, to 4,383.89.
CURRENCIES, OIL: The dollar fell to 102.50 yen from the previous session's 102.55 yen. The euro was flat at $1.3422. Benchmark U.S. crude for September delivery was up 9 cents at $98.38 a barrel.