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Stocks gave up an early rally and ended lower on Wall Street, marking their third losing week in a row. Indexes had opened higher following a report on the job market that showed a moderate slowdown in hiring. That stoked cautious optimism that the Federal Reserve may not need to be as aggressive with high interest rates in its fight against inflation. Indexes turned lower in the afternoon after Russian energy giant Gazprom said it wouldn’t reopen a natural gas pipeline to Germany for now, a bad sign for Europe's ongoing struggle with higher energy prices. The S&P 500 fell about 1%.
Asian shares are trading mostly lower, tracking the broad slide on Wall Street, as investors braced for higher interest rates and inflation worries for some time. Benchmarks fell in Tokyo, Sydney, South Korea and Hong Kong in early trading, but edged up slightly in Shanghai. The slide in the Nikkei came despite signs of improvement in the Japanese economy. A Finance Ministry study on corporate financial statements for April-June showed a 17.6% improvement from the previous year. Stocks closed lower on Wall Street.