Asian equities are headed for further losses on Wednesday, following a poor finish in the U.S. overnight, amid prevailing weakness in the oil markets and as investors exercise caution ahead of the Federal Reserve’s monthly meeting.
Australia’s benchmark S&P ASX 200 index surprisingly crept up 0.1 percent at the open, helped by miners who shrugged off iron ore prices at five-year lows. BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto gained 1.7 and 0.8 percent each.
Meanwhile, the Australian dollar hovered near multi-year lows early Wednesday, pinned at 8216 U.S. cents after minutes of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s December policy meeting revealed on Tuesday that the central bank felt a further decline in the local currency was needed to help cushion the economy from falling resource prices.
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