Asian stocks fell, dragging down the regional benchmark index from an almost six-month high, as a strengthening yen weighed on Japanese exporters. Australian bonds fell after economic growth data, while crude oil traded above $50 a barrel.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index declined 0.4 percent by 11:12 a.m. in Tokyo, while Japan’s Topix lost 1 percent and Nissan Motor Co. sank 2.2 percent. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures slipped 0.1 percent. The yen strengthened for a second day against the dollar. Australia’s 10-year government bond yields climbed to a five-week high of 2.62 percent. U.S. oil traded at $50.70 a barrel as Saudi Arabia signaled stronger demand before data on U.S. inventories.
Global equities are trimming gains that have added almost $5 trillion of market value during the past six months amid a wave of monetary easing and signs of strength in the U.S. economy. Data on service industries from India to Europe and the U.S. are due today, while Chinese lawmakers are meeting in Beijing to discuss economic policies for the world’s second-largest economy.
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