Offshore markets

The Dow and Nasdaq edged higher on Wednesday, after profits by IBM and Google helped to soothe concerns about the tech sector.

But later today Apple is expected to report its first fall in profit in a decade

The Dow Jones Index was up 70 points, or 0.51%, to 13,782. The Nasdaq Composite was up 10 points, or 0.34%, to 3,152.

The FTSE 100 in London was up 0.3%;, the DAX in Franfurt was up 0.15% and the CAC-40 in Paris was down 0.40%.

Earlier, the Nikkei index in Tokyo lost 222 points to close at 10,487 and the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong ended down 23 points at 23,635.

Across the Tasman, the Australian 200 Index closed on Wednesday up 9 points, or 0.2%, at 4,788 and the NZX50 rose a point to close at 4,188.

At 8.30am on Thursday, the New Zealand dollar was trading at 84.12 US cents, 73.76 Australian cents, 53.09 pence, 74.49 yen and 0.6318 euro. The Trade Weighted Index was at 75.48.

Brent crude oil was trading at $US114.11 per barrel and gold was trading at $US1686.44 per ounce.

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