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Updated from 12:35 a.m. EST

Asian stocks finished mixed Wednesday with shares of energy companies trading lower after oil fell to below $60 a barrel.

Japan's Nikkei 225 stock average closed down by 1.3% to 8695.51. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong fell 0.7%, reversing earlier losses, while the S&P/ASX 200 index in Australia finished lower by 0.9%.

The Shanghai Composite Index in China rose 0.8% on a muted response to the country's $586 billion stimulus plan announced earlier this week.

Energy stocks, such as




(CEO) - Get CNOOC Ltd. Report

, fell after oil hovered near 20-month lows. The price of oil dropped 25 cents to $59.08 a barrel in electronic trading on the

New York Mercantile Exchange

. Shares of exporters also declined.

Stocks in Europe were higher Wednesday. The FTSE 100 index in London rose 1.6%, while the DAX index in Frankfurt rose 2.1%. Shares of Dutch financial-services company


(ING) - Get ING Group N.V. Report

rose after reporting its first ever quarterly loss. The loss, however, was narrower than forecast.

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Stock futures in the U.S. were higher after Wall Street closed with heavy losses Tuesday.

S&P 500

futures rose 12 points to 905, and were trading 7.32 points above fair value.


futures rose 11 points to 1234, and were 7.79 points above fair value.


Dow Jones Industrial Average

lost 176.58 points, or 2%, at 8693.96 on Tuesday. The S&P 500 fell 20.26 points, or 2.2%, to 898.95. The Nasdaq gave back 35.84 points, or 2.2%, to 1580.90.

Stocks rallied Tuesday afternoon on an announcement by the Federal Housing Finance Agency that it would work to refinance mortgages tied to government-sponsored entities

Fannie Mae

( FNM) and

Freddie Mac

( FRE) but buying enthusiasm soon faded. Shares of

General Motors

(GM) - Get General Motors Company Report

hit a 65-year low as it looks increasingly likely the automaker will have to rely on assistance from the U.S. government to stay afloat.

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