*Merck up as results beat expectations, but Pfizer slips. United Parcel Service shares fell 3.7 percent to $98.86 after the world's biggest courier company slashed its earnings forecast for the year due to spending to boost capacity. Rival shipping company FedEx Corp was down 1.6 percent at $147.14.» Read More
NEW YORK, March 28- U.S. stocks rose at the open on Friday lifted by remarks from China's Premier Li Keqiang that the Chinese government was ready to take steps to support its economy.
*Momentum stocks still in focus, Netflix down in premarket. *Red Hat down after outlook, BlackBerry up on results. NEW YORK, March 28- U.S. stock index futures indicated a higher opening on Wall Street Friday, lifted by remarks from China's Premier Li Keqiang that the Chinese government was ready to take steps to support its economy.
*Red Hat profit beats expectations, but outlook weak. NEW YORK, March 28- U.S. stock index futures rose on Friday, lifted by remarks from China's Premier Li Keqiang that the Chinese government was ready to take steps to support its economy. *The prospect of slowing growth in China, the world's second-largest economy, has long been a market headwind.
SHANGHAI, March 28- Hong Kong shares rose on Friday on the back of strong bank earnings, helping the benchmark index have its best weekly performance since mid-February. The China Enterprises Index of the leading offshore Chinese listings in Hong Kong closed up 1.3 percent, contributing to its best weekly performance since the week ending Nov. 22.
SHANGHAI, March 28- China shares closed down on Friday, as gains from major index heavyweights were offset by a sell-off in tech shares as investors booked profits on worries that their recent stellar performance may be coming to an end. Investors also continued to desert Kweichow Moutai Co Ltd, with the stock losing 3.2 percent.
TOKYO, March 28- Japanese stocks rose to two-week highs on Friday in choppy trade ahead of the approaching fiscal year-end, while Yahoo Japan Corp dived on questions over strategy following news it will buy mobile network operator eAccess from SoftBank Corp. Gains in Asian markets helped the Nikkei share average end 0.5 percent higher at 14,696.03, the best close since March 13.
*Asian shares supported by reports Beijing to accelerate spending. SYDNEY, March 28- The euro was wallowing near three-week lows in Asia on Friday as speculation intensified that the European Central Bank might ease policy further, while reports Beijing would fast track infrastructure spending supported Asian shares.
SHANGHAI/ HONG KONG, March 28- Hong Kong shares produced a solid gain early Friday, lifted by the financial sector on strong bank earnings, while mainland index edged up, held down by falls in tech stocks. The China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong rose 1.6 percent.
*Asian shares supported by speculation of China stimulus. SYDNEY, March 28- The euro was wallowing near three-week lows in Asia on Friday as speculation intensified that the European Central Bank might ease policy further, while similar hopes of stimulus in China gave a fillip to Asian shares.
SYDNEY, March 28- The euro was wallowing near three-week lows in Asia on Friday as speculation intensified that the European Central Bank might ease policy further, while bond yields and gold were down on the outlook for low inflation in the U.S. and Europe.
NEW YORK, March 27- U.S. stocks closed lower on Thursday, led by bank shares after a steep drop in Citigroup shares a day after the Federal Reserve rejected Citi's capital plan. Technology shares also helped lead the selloff. Based on the latest available data, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 4.76 points or 0.03 percent, to finish unofficially at 16,264.23.
*Citigroup shares slump after Fed rejects capital plan. Markets were also pressured by a steep decline in Citigroup Inc shares, which suffered their biggest daily drop since November 2012 after the Federal Reserve rejected the bank's capital plan.
*Alstom posts steepest loss on CAC 40. PARIS, March 27- Shares in Alstom fell on Thursday on the prospect that the French engineering firm could face hefty penalties from the U.S. Justice Department in a bribery probe focused on Asia.
LONDON, March 27- European stock indexes dipped lower on Thursday after a profit warning at fashion retailer Hennes& Mauritz knocked its shares down almost 4 percent. The euro zone's blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index also declined by 0.4 percent to 3,119.22 points.
SHANGHAI, March 27- Hong Kong shares fell on Wednesday as investors staged a sell-off of index tech heavyweight Tencent Holdings after U.S-listed peers declined. The Hang Seng Index ended down 0.3 percent at 21,834.5, though the China Enterprises Index of the top Chinese listings in Hong Kong rose 0.2 percent.
PARIS, March 27- European shares dipped in early trade on Thursday, halting their recovery rally, with Hennes& Mauritz falling after reporting lower-than-expected quarterly profits. At 0803 GMT, the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares was down 0.2 percent at 1,316.68 points, after gaining 3.3 percent since mid-March.
SHANGHAI, March 27- China shares shed gains in late trading on a see-saw Thursday, ending down after though banking stocks rose for much of the afternoon on rumours the central bank may cut its reserve requirements. Minsheng Bank rose 3.6 percent, and Shanghai Pudong Development Bank Co Ltd 1.2 percent.
TOKYO, March 27- Japanese government bond prices slipped on Thursday as a sizable bounce by Tokyo stocks weighed on the bond market. The benchmark 10- year cash yield rose 0.5 basis point to 0.630 percent, and the 20- year yield edged up 1 basis pint to 1.500 percent. An auction of 2.7 trillion yen in two-year notes attracted ample investor demand.
Shares in Tencent Holdings Ltd, China's biggest listed internet firm with a profitable mobile gaming business, fell more than 7 percent to their lowest in six weeks, while the Hang Seng Composite Index for Information Technology fell nearly 5 percent, its biggest drop in nearly two months.
*China tech stocks spooked by losses in U.S. tech sector. SYDNEY, March 27- Asian markets were in skittish mood on Thursday following a soft finish on Wall Street and amid simmering tensions over Ukraine, while Chinese tech stocks took a tumble in sympathy with their U.S. counterparts.