By Mia Lamar
International companies trading in New York closed lower Monday following a string of disappointing data points from Asia, including a sharp slowdown in Japan's economic growth.
The Bank of New York index of ADRs fell 0.5% to 123.52. Economic growth in Japan slowed to an annualized pace of 1.4% in the second quarter, well below expectations for 2.7% growth and down from a revised 5.5% pace in the first quarter.
A lack of supportive policy changes in China also put a damper on sentiment. Weak Chinese trade data last week had raised expectations that the People's Bank of China might act to stimulate growth, but as of Monday, those actions had failed to materialize.
The Asian index fell 0.7% to 120.12 as energy stocks ended broadly weaker. PetroChina Co. (PTR, K3OD.SG, 0857.HK, 601857.SH) fell 1.6% to $125.58 while Sinopec Shanghai Petrochemical Co. (SHI, K3DD.SG, 600688.SH, 0338.HK) slumped 2.1% to $27.27.
Bucking the losing trend was China's Focus Media Holding Ltd. (FMCN), which jumped 8.9% to $25.45 after a group led by its chief executive offered to take the advertising company private in a $3.66 billion deal. The $27-a-share offer would remove Focus Media from the skeptical eye of U.S. investors and mark the latest--and largest--Chinese company to back away from a U.S. listing.
The European index fell 0.3% to 115.50. The region's energy firms also traded lower, led by an 1.2% loss for Norwegian oil-and-gas major Statoil ASA (STO, STL.OS).
Shares of Alcatel-Lucent (ALU, ALU.FR) fell 2.5% to $1.18 after Standard & Poor's Ratings Services cut its outlook on the French telecom-equipment maker to negative from stable, citing expectations for weak operating results and "high cash flow losses" this year.
The Latin American index fell 1% to 328.11 and the emerging markets index shed 0.9% to 278.31.
Brazilian shares were doubly hit by growth concerns after a survey of analysts conducted by the Brazilian Central Bank pegged Brazil's economic growth this year at just 1.81%, down from last week's 1.85% forecast. Brazil's economy grew 2.7% in 2011.
Steelmaker Companhia Siderurgica Nacional (SID, CSNA3.BR) fell 1% to $5.33, BRF Brasil Foods SA (BRFS, BRFS3.BR)--Brazil's biggest food processor by sales--slumped 2.2% to $14.53 and state-run energy heavyweight Petroleo Brasileiro SA (PBR, PETR3.BR, PETR4.BR), or Petrobras, slipped 0.5% to $21.88.
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