LONDON (AP) — World stock markets were mixed on Friday as investors weighed disappointing U.S. economic data and upbeat forecasts from Intel, the computer chipmaker.
Sentiment has been subdued this week, particularly since a U.S. report on Thursday showed retail sales in the world's largest economy did not grow as much as expected in May. Further denting optimism was the rise in oil prices, which can hurt the growth prospects for companies.
In Europe, France's CAC 40 slipped 0.2 percent to close at 4,543.28 and Germany's DAX lost 0.3 percent to 9,912.87. Britain's FTSE 100 fell 1 percent to 6,777.85.
In the U.S., however, markets managed to eke out gains after Intel said sales of computers to businesses were stronger than expected, a good sign for the broader economy. The Dow was 0.2 percent higher at 16,762.13 and the S&P 500 was up by the same rate, to 1,933.70. Shares in Intel jumped 6 percent.
Traders were monitoring developments in Iraq, where Islamic militants vowed to march on Baghdad after pushing deep into parts of the country's Sunni heartland previously controlled by U.S. forces. U.S. officials ruled out putting troops back on the ground.
"For traders often jaded by seemingly constant news of potential geopolitical risks, the situation in Iraq looks a real concern," said Ric Spooner, chief market analyst at CMC Markets in Sydney. "Markets have been surprised by the speed and extent of rebel incursions into the south."
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