Asian shares poised for mixed open, with geopolitics and earnings in view


Futures pointed to a mixed open for Asian markets on Monday following the lower close on Wall Street in the last session. Investors could also take note of recent geopolitical tensions on the back of U.S.-led strikes on Syria last week.

U.S. stocks declined on Friday, weighed down by bank earnings. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.5 percent, or 122.91 points, to close at 24,360.14, with J.P. Morgan Chase as the worst-performing stock in the index. The S&P 500 closed 0.3 percent lower at 2,656.30 as financials dropped 1.6 percent. The Nasdaq composite declined 0.5 percent to 7,106.65.

Bank earnings reported on Friday by Citigroup, Wells Fargo and J.P. Morgan Chase surpassed analyst expectations, and traded higher before falling as markets had already priced in the strong results.

Geopolitical tensions were also likely to be in focus following U.S.-led precision missile strikes in Syria on Friday U.S. time. The strikes, carried out in conjunction with the U.K. and France, were intended to serve as a deterrent against chemical weapons, according to U.S. President Donald Trump.

The airstrikes on Friday “have thus far drawn only verbal condemnation from Russia … with Russia’s prediction of ‘global chaos’ if the West hits Syria again not filling markets with fresh dread, at least judging from the limited foreign exchange market movements evident in the first two hours of the new trading week,” Ray Attrill, head of foreign exchange strategy at National Australia Bank, said in a note.

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