Asian equities are mostly flat
Asian equity markets have opened in a sedate fashion today, mostly trading around each side of unchanged as volumes are muted by the China and Japan holidays. The somewhat confusing price action overnight in New York has left the region content to sit in wait-and-see mode with Covid-19 nerves regionally, offsetting the bullishness of the Wall Street reopening gnomes.
Overnight, the S&P 500 rose 0.28%, while the Nasdaq retreated by 0.48%, even as the Dow Jones climbed 0.71%. Equity markets ignored the US Manufacturing ISM data for April, which came in at 60.50, still expansionary but well below market forecasts of 65.0. The equity markets are instead concentrating on announcements around New York of the impending easing of pandemic restrictions, with the reopening/recovery narrative in the ascendant. In Asia, futures on all three have fallen, giving back much of the overnight gains and suggesting that despite the noise, equity markets are as directionless as other asset classes over the past two sessions.
The South Korean Kospi is down 0.35% after the higher inflation print this morning. Hong Kong is unchanged, while Singapore has fallen 0.30% as locally transmitted Covid-19 fears persist. Kuala Lumpur has climbed 0.10% after oil prices rose last night, and Jakarta has increased by 0.35%.
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