Asian equity markets posted an upbeat performance on Friday, after the European Central Bank unleashed a massive stimulus package to resuscitate the euro zone.» Read More
*BHP UK shares drop 4 pct. MELBOURNE, Aug 19- Top global miner BHP Billiton will spin off a roughly $16 billion company to shareholders, mostly offloading assets acquired in its 2001 merger with Billiton, as it looks to focus on its strongest businesses.
*H2 profit up 8 pct to $5.69 bln. MELBOURNE, Aug 19- Top global miner BHP Billiton will spin off a roughly $14 billion company to shareholders, mostly offloading assets it acquired in its 2001 merger with Billiton, as it looks to focus on its strongest businesses.
Asian equities traded mixed on Monday as a cautious sentiment set in after fresh conflict in Ukraine at the weekend.
Investors will be looking at data due from Japan and China in the week ahead, for further cues on the health of Asia's two largest economies.
Most Asian equities traded higher on the last trading day of the week, taking cues from a firm finish on Wall Street overnight.
Rio Tinto said it was on track to produce 295 million tons of the steel-making material in 2014, up from 266 million last year.
European shares closed around the flatline on Thursday, paring earlier gains.
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Take a look at some of Friday's midday movers:
Australian billionaire Gina Rinehart has secured $7.2 billion in debt for her Roy Hill iron ore mining project.
China posts the biggest drop in exports in four-and-a-half years and the biggest trade deficit in two years, weighing on stocks.
Asian shares mostly saw subdued trade on Thursday, ahead of Friday's U.S. nonfarm payrolls report.
After a most choppy session, Asian stocks closed lower on the first trading day of the week.
Some of Tuesday's midday movers:
Charles Leyland, Managing Director at Leyland Private Asset Management says despite Challenger Financial Group's strong result, there is still plenty of growth left in the stock.
BHP Billiton reported a 31 percent rise in first-half profit on Tuesday and signaled it would consider a dividend hike in August.
Attention this week is likely to be on the release of HSBC's flash China purchasing managers' index (PMI) for February and Bank of Japan's meeting.
David Walker, Head of Equities Research at Stocks In Value, says Rio Tinto could reward investors with a stronger-than-expected dividend.
Asian equity markets traded mixed on Wednesday. Overnight gains on Wall Street pushed Japan and South Korea shares on a rebound.