World Stocks Mixed on Thursday

SINGAPORE (AP) -- World markets are mixed ahead of a European Central Bank policy meeting. Asian share benchmarks were mixed on concerns that easing tensions between the U.S. and Europe could bode ill for a compromise with Beijing over trade.

KEEPING SCORE: Britain's FTSE 100 was less than 0.1 percent lower at 7,656.04 while France's CAC 40 added 0.7 percent to 5,463.32 on Thursday. Germany's DAX jumped 1.4 percent to 12,751.24. U.S. indexes were set for a mixed opening. S&P 500 futures dropped 0.2 percent to 2,835.70. Dow futures rose 0.1 percent to 25,426.00.

ASIA'S DAY: Japan's Nikkei 225 lost 0.1 percent to 22,586.87 while South Korea's Kospi added 0.7 percent to 2,289.06. Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 0.5 percent to 28,781.14. The Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.7 percent to 2,882.23. Australia's S&P-ASX 200 slipped 0.1 percent to 6,244.50. India's Sensex was flat at 36,874.73 and markets in Southeast Asia were mostly higher.

U.S.-EU AGREEMENT: President Trump and European leaders pulled back from the brink of a trade war over autos on Wednesday and agreed to start talks to dismantle trade barriers between the United States and the European Union. Trump and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncke came to a vague agreement to hold off on new tariffs, suggesting that the United States will suspend plans to start taxing European auto imports --- a move that would have marked a major escalation in trade tensions between the allies. Trump said the EU had agreed to buy "a lot of soybeans" --- possibly lessening the fallout from tariffs imposed by China on its imports of American soybeans --- and increase its imports of liquefied natural gas from the U.S. The two also agreed to resolve a dispute over U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum. Tensions between the world's two largest economies rose. Earlier Wednesday, Trump tweeted that China was "vicious" on trade and said it was targeting U.S. farmers specifically because "they know I love & respect" them.

ANALYST'S TAKE: "The news has effectively quelled US-EU tensions for now," Stephen Innes of Oanda said in a commentary.

FACEBOOK REPORT: Facebook said its user base and revenue grew more slowly than expected in the second quarter as the company grappled with privacy issues, sending its stock tumbling nearly 18 percent to $178.77 in after-hours trading.

CURRENCIES: The dollar dropped to 110.78 yen from 110.97 yen. The euro eased to $1.1709 from $1.1732.

OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude dropped 11 cents to $69.19 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract added 78 cents to settle at $69.30 per barrel on Wednesday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose 24 cents to $74.17.

(BE)