Asia markets slump on corporate earnings, US tech sell-off

Asia markets tumbled Friday to end two days of gains as traders digested a host of disappointing corporate results and a fall in US technology stocks dented optimism.

Despite yet another Dow Jones record Thursday, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Shanghai were all down Friday, with sharp falls recorded in Seoul and Sydney.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq's streak of all-time high closes ended Thursday with Apple, Google-parent Alphabet and Netflix shares all slumping at least 1.5 percent.

Investors were also spooked after internet colossus Amazon reported its profit shrank despite surging sales as it poured money into growth, with its shares slipping three percent.

The dollar, which had fallen sharply on Wednesday after a Federal Reserve policy statement highlighted a tepid inflation outlook, again drifted lower after staging a modest recovery on data showing US durable goods orders climbed more than expected.

Thursday figures also showed the US goods trade deficit fell, fuelling hopes of solid US growth data later in the day.

"Durable goods and trade data boosted the prospects for a solid GDP print for the second quarter in the United States," said Greg McKenna, chief market strategist at CFD and FX Provider, AxiTrader.

"That we may have seen a near term pessimistic crescendo yesterday for the dollar is a real chance if the next week sees a run of better data in the States."

The Dow closed at its second straight record following strong earnings from Verizon and Procter & Gamble and another gain by Boeing, which also surged Wednesday following strong results.

But high-profile earnings disappointments pressured bourses in Europe with Deutsche Bank, Germany's biggest lender, slumping 6.5 percent after reporting that operating profit more than doubled, while posting a 10 percent decline in revenue.

- US growth data -

Attention remains focused on corporate results ahead of the US growth data, analysts said.

Asian investors largely discounted a raft of Japanese economic data, which showed household spending rose after 15 months of declines while inflation stayed tepid.

"Investors are becoming increasingly wary over the historically low volatility levels, with a host of key economic data coming out in the US," Hideyuki Ishiguro, a senior strategist at Daiwa Securities in Tokyo, said.

"With Amazon?s earnings falling short of estimates, the US market may readjust its expectations."

Oil took a breather in Asian trade Friday after rising for four straight days on receding US crude inventories, although prices were pegged by lingering concerns about an oversupply.

Dongyul Lim, senior sales trader at CMC Markets in Singapore, said: "The US could continue to increase oil production at any time, and rises in oil prices could be subdued if there is no clarity over future US output growth."

-- Bloomberg News contributed to this report --

- Key figures around 0230 GMT -

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 0.4 percent at 19,994.54 (break)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 0.5 percent at 27,003.57

Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.1 percent at 3,248.76

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.686 from $1.1677

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.3080 from $1.3061

Dollar/yen: DOWN at 111.09 yen from 111.24 yen

Oil - West Texas Intermediate: DOWN four cents at $49.00 per barrel

Oil - Brent North Sea: DOWN four cents at $51.45

New York - DOW: UP 0.4 percent at 21,795.55 (close)

London - FTSE 100: DOWN 0.1 percent at 7,443.01 points (close)

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Dieting-Dettori’s Enable set for King George coronation

Frankie Dettori missed Royal Ascot but on Saturday he returns to the Berkshire course with a compelling chance of lifting the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes on Enable.

It is 13 years since the Italian legend last won the British showpiece for a fourth time on Doyen.

He has high hopes of ending the long wait for a fifth King George on the John Gosden-trained English and Irish Oaks heroine.

Enable faces a maximum of nine rivals headed by last year's winner Highland Reel.

Aidan O'Brien's globetrotting five-year-old colt commanded the ante-post betting until Enable entered calculations.

With the ground forecast to be in her favour, Enable is only 6-5 to emulate Gosden's Taghrooda, the last classic generation filly to land the mile and a half (2400m) contest in 2014, trained also by Gosden.

Dettori has been dieting to ensure the three-year-old filly fully exploits her attractive weight allowance against her male counterparts and elders in this all-aged £1 million ($1.3m, 1.1m euros) Grade One mid-summer highlight.

And he reported his conveyance in buoyant health after she unceremoniously threw him to the floor on the gallops in Newmarket this week.

"I rode Enable (on Tuesday) and believe it or not she dumped me on the floor," he recounted in his blog for British bookmaker Ladbrokes.

- Immortalised -

"I was like, 'thanks very much!' Luckily, I fell standing up but she still dumped me. She is just full of herself right now and raring to go."

The 46-year-old jockey, immortalised in Ascot folklore after his 'magnificent seven' when he went through the card on September 28, 1996, had to cry off Royal Ascot with a shoulder injury.

He rushed his return to team up with Enable at the Curragh in the Irish Oaks a fortnight ago.

"She (Enable) was the reason I came back from injury so early. She really is special. I pushed myself so I could ride her in Ireland and it was worth it."

On his fasting he said: "I've got to do 8st 7lb (53.97 kilos) in the King George, which is my bare minimum, so I need to keep my weight down.

"My diet is all boring stuff at the moment ? white fish, vegetables and water. It's grim!"

Enable is joined by stablemate Jack Hobbs, the 5-1 third favourite who won the Irish Derby in 2015, but who was well beaten by Highland Reel in the Prince of Wales's Stakes at the Royal meeting last month.

O'Brien's admirable servant, a winner in Ireland, England, the United States and Hong Kong, is back to follow up his 2016 success over the Dettori-ridden Wings of Desire.

O'Brien, who also runs Highland Reel's full brother Idaho, on the mark at Royal Ascot in the Hardwicke Stakes, said: "They both came out of Ascot well and we're happy with them."

While the master Irish trainer is seeking his fifth King George for Highland Reel, victory will see him overtake the now retired Cirrus des Aigles's European record £6 million in prize money.

In Saturday's top-class renewal Michael Stoute's Ulysses is 8-1 fourth favourite to follow up his Eclipse Stakes success, while at the other end of the market at 100-1 lurks a rare runner from South America, Sixties Song.

The race is due off at 1435 GMT.

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The former England and Manchester United captain made his second debut for his boyhood club in their laboured 1-0 Europa League qualifying first leg tie against the Slovakian side MFK Ruzomberok.

It was a frustrating and testing night for an Everton side that has spent a lot of money following the near £90 million sale of Romelu Lukaku to Manchester United and it took a deflected goal from defender Leighton Baines to earn his team a lead ahead of next week?s return leg.

And Rooney was pleased that he can now concentrate on football after the hype and pressure of his first game back with Everton in 13 years is behind him.

?I think I?ve said everything the last few weeks but obviously it was great to be out at Goodison in a blue shirt,? said Rooney. ?It was a great feeling.

?This was an important game for us and I had to put my emotions to one side and thankfully I?ve done that again.

?Now I can get down more to focusing on the football over the coming weeks.

?It?s still very early in our pre-season, it was a first 90 minutes for a lot of us, but we got the win and the clean sheet.

?We know we can play better than we did but we got the goal and the clean sheet.?

The tie came after just four weeks of pre-season for the Premier League side and their goalscorer confessed that, while the rustiness was obvious in the first leg tie, her expects a better performance in the return game.

?We know that will be a tough game. It was a tough game tonight at home,? said Baines.

?But we?ll go there with a bit more idea of what to expect but we?re in front and if we keep another clean sheet, which we?re fully capable of doing, we will win the tie.

?We?re treating the competition seriously but it?s also part of our pre-season as well because of the way it?s panned out.

?It was a full 90 minutes for everyone and we will be better next week for that.?

Manager Ronald Koeman handed four debuts to starters -- Rooney, Davy Klaassen, Michael Keane and Cuco Martina -- while a fifth debutant, Sandro Ramirez, made an impressive impact as a second half substitute.

But the main focus of attention remained Rooney, 31, throughout the tie.

?Overall Wayne was good, positive,? said Koeman. ?But I think the whole team was.

?I?d like to have created a little bit more, scored more goals, but they worked very hard and got a clean sheet. There were a lot of positives after four weeks of pre-season.

?Next week, after one more week of training, will be a different game. They (Ruzomberok) know they will have to do more than they did and maybe that makes it a different game for us.?

One player not handed a debut by Koeman was £30 million goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, with Maarten Stekelenburg preferred, although Koeman revealed that the former Sunderland man may be handed his first start in the return.

?We know Maarten played half of last season,? said the manager. ?Jason was one of three players who have only had eight or nine days training.

?It was too soon to start but maybe he will start next week.?

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