Mon, 24 Feb 2020

China leads way with rebound for Asian stocks

By Jay Jackson, The Tokyo News.Net
15 Nov 2018, 17:23 GMT+10

SYDNEY, Australia – Stocks in Asia bounced back on Thursday after a glimmer of hope on the U.S.-China trade situation, and despite a continuing slide in oil prices.

China, according to a Reuters report, has reached out to the United States in a bid to address the two countries' differences on trade.

U.S. Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet at the G-20 later this month and are expected to at least address the trade situation, if not re-start negotiations formally.

"While it's difficult to pin-point a specific event for the risk-off move, recent themes appear to be keeping markets cautious include oil's recent plummet, Apple's fall, U.S. political gridlock, China's slowing growth, tightening liquidity, a hawkish Fed, earnings peak, Italian jitters, and Brexit uncertainty," ANZ in a bulletin.

At the close of trading Thursday in Australia, the All Ordinaries was ahead 2.90 points or 0.05% at 5,825.20.

In China, the Shanghai Composite closed up 35.93 points or 1.36% at 2,668.17.

The Hong Kong Hang Seng was in positive territory at the close trading Thursday. The key index was ahead 448.91 points or 1.75% at 26,103.34.

The only spoiler was the Nikkei 225, although its retreat was minor. The benchmark Tokyo index closed down 42.86 points or 0.20% at 21,803.62.

Stocks in the U.S. overnight continued weaker with financials taking the brunt of the selling, and further losses in Apple Inc. undermining the tech sector.

At the close of trading Wednesday, the Dow Jones industrials were 205.99 points or 81% lower at 25,080.50.

The Standard and Poor's 500 dropped 20.60 points or 0.76% to 2,701.58.

The tech-laden Nasdaq Composite was 64.48 points or 0.90% lower at 7,136.39. Shares in Apple declined $5.43 or 2.82% to $186.80. The shares are now down roughly 20% from their peak.

"If U.S. stocks are to bounce back, economic indicators will be key," Junichi Ishikawa, senior forex strategist at IG Securities in Tokyo told the Reuters Thomson news agency on Thursday.

"Immediate focus will be on today's U.S. retail sales data, which will provide a view of how private consumption - the main component of economic growth - is faring."

Foreign exchange markets on Thursday in Asia, and heading into the Europe session were active with the U.S. dollar continuing to lose ground.

In early trading in Europe on Thursday the British pound was trading at 1.3009, while the euro was firm at 1.1336.

The Japanese yen was stronger at 113.56. The Swiss franc was changing hands at 1.0059, and the Canadian dollar at 1.3226.

The trans-Tasman currencies were both in demand with the Australian dollar trading at 0.7276 and the New Zealand dollar at 0.6802.


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