A very mixed day for Asian equities

Wall Street unwound an intra-day selloff late in the session, on what I suspect, were month-end flows, to finish modestly in the green on Friday. The S&P 500 rose 0.19%, with the Nasdaq climbing by 0.33%, while the Dow Jones finished 0.25% higher. In Asia, US index futures are around 0.20% higher, lifted by a strong start in Japan.

Japanese election boosts Nikkei

Asian equities are very mixed. A decent Jibun PMI and the comprehensive LDP win in yesterday’s election has seen the Nikkei 225 leap 2.35% higher. Hopes for the Japan recovery, and the election green-lighting another hefty fiscal package for Japan lifting equities there. South Korea has shrugged of mixed trade data to see the Kospi rise 0.55%.

The story in China is a completely different one. The PBOC this morning, started withdrawing the recent liquidity injections. Official PMIs fell over the weekend, although the Caixin Manufacturing PMI clung to positive territory. And with my China property developers, including an Evergrande unit due to make offshore coupon payment this week, China market sentiment is decidedly negative.  The Shanghai Composite has fallen by 0.50%, with the CSI 300 edging 0.25% lower. In Hong Kong the selloff is more entrenched, the Hang Seng tumbling by 1.25%.

The mixed day continues in ASEAN where Singapore has risen by 0.85%, with Jakarta 0.20% higher and Bangkok unchanged as borders reopen today to international visitors. Meanwhile, Kuala Lumpur has tumbled by 2.10% after the government announced a one-off extra tax on large companies over the weekend. Australian markets have shaken on pre-RBA nerves, as US index futures climb in Asia and international borders reopen today. Strong ANZ jobs data has lifted sentiment further with the ASX 200 rising 0.70%, and the All Ordinaries rising by 0.35%.

Much of Europe is closed for a holiday today, but German and UK markets should be able to divorce themselves from China nerves to open slightly higher this afternoon. Further falls in European natural gas prices should also be a tailwind, especially for UK markets.

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Jeffrey Halley

Jeffrey Halley

Senior Market Analyst, Asia Pacific, from 2016 to August 2022
With more than 30 years of FX experience – from spot/margin trading and NDFs through to currency options and futures – Jeffrey Halley was OANDA’s Senior Market Analyst for Asia Pacific, responsible for providing timely and relevant macro analysis covering a wide range of asset classes. He has previously worked with leading institutions such as Saxo Capital Markets, DynexCorp Currency Portfolio Management, IG, IFX, Fimat Internationale Banque, HSBC and Barclays. A highly sought-after analyst, Jeffrey has appeared on a wide range of global news channels including Bloomberg, BBC, Reuters, CNBC, MSN, Sky TV and Channel News Asia as well as in leading print publications such as The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, among others. He was born in New Zealand and holds an MBA from the Cass Business School.
Jeffrey Halley
Jeffrey Halley

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