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Global stocks waver as oil prices level out, Samsung plunges

Global shares meandered on Tuesday as oil prices leveled out after surging the day before. South Korea’s benchmark dropped after reports of fresh problems with the Galaxy Note 7 phone pulled Samsung Electronic’s shares sharply lower.

KEEPING SCORE: France’s CAC 40 inched down 0.1 percent to 4,491.25 in early trading and Germany’s DAX fell 0.2 percent to 10,598.28. But Britain’s FTSE 100 added 0.3 percent to 7,117.97. U.S. shares were set to drift lower, with Dow futures slipping nearly 0.2 percent to 18,231. S&P 500 futures were also down nearly 0.2 percent to 2,155.20.

SAMSUNG WOES: Shares in Samsung Electronics fell 8 percent after the company said it was halting sales of its Note 7 smartphones. It advised customers to turn off their devices or replace them with different devices. Samsung issued a worldwide recall of the Note 7, a huge phone-bordering-on-tablet with a powerful battery, after finding the devices have a tendency to catch fire. South Korean officials said Tuesday that replacement devices have also overheated or caught fire.

OIL AND RUSSIA: Oil prices were mixed after spiking to their highest level in a year after Russian President Vladimir Putin said Monday that Russia, which is not a member of OPEC, supports a preliminary agreement by OPEC nations to cut oil output.

THE QUOTE: “It was Russia to the rescue last night, as Vladimir Putin said Russia was ready to join with OPEC in creating a deal to curb production and pump up prices. At the same Energy Congress in Istanbul, the ever outspoken Algerian Energy Minister called on other non-OPEC producers to join them,” Jeff Halley, a senior market analyst at OANDA, said in a commentary.

ASIA’S DAY: Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 rose 1.0 percent to finish at 17,024.76. Tokyo markets were closed Monday for a national holiday. South Korea’s Kospi slipped 1.2 percent to 2,031.93. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 added 0.1 percent to 5,479.80. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng dropped 1.4 percent to 23,523.21, while the Shanghai Composite gained 0.6 percent to 3,065.25. Shares in Southeast Asia were mixed.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude was flat at $51.35 a barrel after adding $1.54 in New York on Monday, in its highest close since July 2015. Brent crude, used to price international oils, slipped 11 cents to $53.03 a barrel in London.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 103.95 yen from 102.96 yen late Monday in Asia. The euro fell to $1.1111 from $1.1192.

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