Asian shares waver following lacklustre Wall Street session

Elaine Kurtenbach, The Associated Press
Published Thursday, April 4, 2019 1:43AM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, April 4, 2019 5:10AM EDT

BANGKOK — Shares retreated in Europe on Thursday after a group of German economic research institutes warned of trouble ahead for manufacturing, especially if Britain exits the European Union without a divorce deal.

Germany’s DAX fell 0.2% to 11,936.15 and the CAC 40 in France sank 0.3% per cent to 5455.37. The FTSE 100 in Britain tumbled 0.7% to 7,368.80 amid continued strife over arrangements for Britain’s departure from the EU.

Shares on Wall Street looked set for a slow start, with the future contract for the Dow Jones Industrial Average unchanged at 26,241 and that for the S&P 500 down 0.1% at 2,876.10.

Meetings were planned Thursday between the British government and the opposition Labour Party in an urgent search for a compromise solution for Brexit.

The upper House of Lords was set to consider legislation that would force Prime Minister Theresa May to seek a delay from the EU. The bill is aimed at preventing a no-deal Brexit on April 12.

The group of five leading German economic research institutes slashed their growth forecast to 0.8% from 1.9%, warning that if Britain leaves the European Union without a deal, it could get even worse. They said that “political risks have further clouded the global economic environment.”

Shares were mixed in Asia, with the Shanghai Composite jumping 0.9% to 3,246.57 on reports of possible progress in China-U.S. trade talks.

The U.S. and China opened a ninth round of talks Wednesday, aiming to further narrow differences in an ongoing trade war that has deepened uncertainty for businesses and investors and cast a pall over the outlook for the global economy.

The talks followed meetings last week in Beijing, where Larry Kudlow, a

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