Australian shares are set to open lower, after the S&P 500 fell 1.5% on Friday as investors digested earnings from financial companies including JPMorgan and BlackRock.

ASX futures were down 0.63% or 50 points as of 8:00am on Monday, suggesting a lower open.

US markets got hit with bad news from all angles on Friday, making for a rough trading day.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 476 points, or 1.2%. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq fared even worse, declining 1.5% and 1.6%, respectively.

In commodity markets, Brent crude oil was up 0.8% to US$90.45 a barrel, while gold was down 1.2% at US$2,344.37.

In local bond markets, the yield on Australian 2 Year government bonds was up at 3.89% while the 10 Year yield was also up at 4.26%. US Treasury notes were down, with the 2 Year yield at 4.90% and the 10 Year yield at 4.52%.

The Australian dollar was 64.75 US cents. The Wall Street Journal Dollar Index, which tracks the US dollar against 16 other currencies, was flat at 100.19.


Chinese shares closed lower, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index down 0.5% at 3019.47. The Shenzhen Composite Index fell 0.8% and the ChiNext Price Index dropped 1.1%. Energy and property stocks led losses. EVE Energy fell 5.0% and Jinko Solar was down 4.1%. China Vanke extended losses, closing 4.6% lower after the developer confirmed an investigation into a regional manager. Gold miners advanced amid a rally in prices of the precious metal. Shandong Gold Mining rose 5.9% and Zhongjin Gold gained 4.4%. Foxconn Industrial Internet added 4.75%, likely tracking Apple's overnight gains.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index closed 2.2% lower at 16721.69, extending early declines after Chinese exports fell by more than expected in March and Beijing announced measures to step up oversight of the stock market, including tightening the criteria for new listings. Property and health-related stocks led losses, with Longfor Group losing 8.6%, AIA Group shedding 5.8% and Ping An Insurance (Group) 5.7% lower. Among individual movers, China Vanke slumped 7.0%, extending declines to a third session. The few advancers on the benchmark index included Xiaomi, which rose 2.6%, China Hongqiao Group, which gained 1.6%, and, which added 1.1%. The Hang Seng Tech Index fell 1.8%.

Japanese stocks end higher, led by gains in electronics and real-estate stocks, thanks partly to a weak yen. Murata Manufacturing gains 2.8% and Lasertec advances 3.0%. Mitsui Fudosan climbs 7.8% following news of a dividend increase and buyback as part of its long-term business plan focused on capital efficiency. The Nikkei Stock Average rises 0.2% to 39523.55. USD/JPY is at 153.23, compared with 153.27 as of Thursday 5 p.m. Eastern Time. Investors are focusing on any comments on the yen from Japanese officials as well as any policy-related developments from Prime Minister Fumio Kishida's U.S. visit. The 10-year Japanese government bond yield rises one basis point to 0.860%.

Indian shares closed lower, with investor sentiment weighed by the hotter-than-expected U.S. inflation data on Thursday. Almost all sectors ended in the red, with healthcare and energy stocks the biggest laggards. Reliance Industries was 0.8% lower and Oil India dropped 3.3%. Sun Pharmaceutical Industries shed 4.0% and Piramal Pharma lost 4.3%. Tata Motors was the best performer on the benchmark index, rising 0.7%. Tata Consultancy Services rose 0.45% after its 4Q profit beat estimates. The benchmark Sensex ended 1.1% lower at 74244.90.


European shares ended Friday mixed, with the pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 rising 0.14% to 505.25, the CAC 40 losing 0.16% to 8,010.83 while Germany's DAX was down 0.13% to 17,930.32.

The FTSE 100 closed Friday up 0.9% to 7995 points, outperforming global peers supported by a rally on heavyweight miners and oil-stocks, as investors moved out of overvalued U.S. stocks into undervalued U.K. stocks, IG Senior Market Analyst Axel Rudolph said in a note. The world's largest silver miner Fresnillo shares closed up 7.6%, outperforming the index on the strength of gold and silver, followed by miners Glencore and Anglo American, up 5.1% and 3.7%, respectively. Airlines easyJet and IAG continued the previous day falls, down 4.25% and 3.8%, at the bottom of the table.

North America

US markets got hit with bad news from all angles on Friday, making for a rough trading day.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 476 points, or 1.2%. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq fared even worse, declining 1.5% and 1.6%, respectively.

Treasury yields, which had been rising on inflation fears, fell back on Friday amid safe-haven bond buying. The yield on 10-year U.S. Treasury notes dropped by 0.076 percentage point to 4.499%.

JPMorgan Chase, the nation's largest bank, gave an underwhelming forecast for net interest income this year, saying it expects it to be roughly flat as higher deposit costs bite. Citigroup and Wells Fargo said they expect net interest income to fall. Shares in the three banks fell 6.5%, 1.7% and 0.4% respectively.

The University of Michigan's consumer-confidence reading edged down, while inflation expectations for the year ticked up, further feeding concerns that the Federal Reserve won't be in a position to lower rates anytime soon.

And no one could ignore the ominous signs emanating from the Middle East. The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday night that Israel is preparing for an imminent direct attack from Iran on southern or northern Israel. On Friday, it reported that the U.S. had rushed warships into position to protect Israel and American forces in the region.

Gold, which tends to do well amid geopolitical tension, reached a new record high, though who exactly is buying it remains something of a mystery.

Amid all that unsettling news, there is one thing that could soon improve investor moods: potentially strong earnings as the quarterly reporting season continues next week.