Market Buzz: Flat trade after long holidays

(RIA Novosti / STF)
Russian stocks are likely to open flat on Thursday as investors return from long May holidays and keep an eye on jobless data and trade balance reports from the US.

U.S. stocks fell on Wednesday as investors were cautious about the strained political situation in Greece after recent elections and the troubled Spanish banking sector. The Dow Jones closed down 0.8%, while the S&P 500 shed 0.7% with industrial shares among those losing out. The Nasdaq Composite fell 0.4%.

The jobless data claims for the previous week as well as the data on the trade balance for April will be issued later on Thursday.

European stocks closed mostly lower on Wednesday amid renewed worries about Greece’s future and negative news on Spanish banking.

The Stoxx Europe 600 closed 0.3% lower. Spanish stocks fell sharply, with the IBEX 35 sinking 2.8% to its lowest closing price since the autumn of 2003 after the Bank of Spain was asked to take a stake in the troubled lender, Bankia.

Asia markets traded lower Thursday amid data showing Chinese exports and imports in April fell below expectations with Hong Kong commodity-linked firms among the worst hit. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index dropped 1%, South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.12%, while the Shanghai Composite and Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average dropped 0.2% each. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index slipped 0.1%.