By Investors Hub
Asian stocks ended Tuesday’s session on a mixed note as Chinese inflation data signaled weakness in domestic and overseas demand. Investors also awaited the ECB, Fed and BoJ meetings for fresh clues on the monetary policy outlook.
Chinese shares ended slightly lower after the release of the inflation data. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index slipped 0.1 percent to 3,021.20, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index ended marginally higher at 26,683.68.
Data showed Chinese consumer prices climbed at a steady pace in August, while producer prices declined further on weak demand, signaling deflationary pressures.
Consumer prices rose 2.8 percent year-on-year in August, the same pace of growth as seen in July. Economists had forecast the rate of inflation to slow to 2.7 percent.
Producer prices fell 0.8 percent annually after easing 0.3 percent in the previous month. Prices were expected to drop 0.9 percent.
Japanese shares hit a six-week high as a weak yen and higher bond yields helped lift exporters and financials. The Nikkei 225 Index ended the session up 73.68, points, or 0.4 percent, at 21,392, while the broader Topix closed 0.4 percent higher at 1,557.99.
Automakers Honda Motor, Toyota Motor and Subaru rose 1-2 percent as the safe-haven yen touched a five-week low of 107.46 per dollar. Mazda Motor shares soared 5 percent.
Nissan Motor jumped 3.7 percent on news that CEO Hiroto Saikawa will resign. Banks Mizuho Financial, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group rallied 3-4 percent after U.S. government debt yields rose.
Construction machinery makers Komatsu and Hitachi Construction Machinery climbed 3-4 percent.
Meanwhile, Australian markets fell notably, dragged down by technology and healthcare stocks. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index dropped 33.90 points, or 0.5 percent, to 6,614.10, while the broader All Ordinaries Index ended down 32.10 points, or 0.5 percent, at 6,728.
Tech stocks fell on valuation concerns, with Afterpay Touch Group slumping 4.1 percent and WiseTech Global tumbling 7 percent. In the healthcare sector, Heavyweight drugmaker CSL lost 2.7 percent.
Diversified miner South32 gave up 1.8 percent as copper prices slipped on concerns that China’s factory deflation could hit the global economy via exports.
Graphite miner Syrah Resources plummeted 33.3 percent after the company said it would reduce production in October-December to about 5,000 tons per month. Gold miners Evolution and Newcrest gave up around 4 percent as gold prices hit four-week lows.
On the other hand, Origin Energy, Oil Search, Woodside Petroleum and Santos climbed 2-4 percent, buoyed by a rise in oil prices on optimism that OPEC and other countries may agree to extend production cuts.
Australian business confidence and conditions deteriorated in August, survey results from the National Australia Bank showed today. The business confidence index fell to +1 from +4 in July.
Seoul stocks extended gains for the fifth day running on hopes that new talks between the U.S. and China can lead to progress. Markets were also supported by expectations of a new wave of stimulus by the European Central Bank.
The benchmark Kospi climbed 12.53 points, or 0.6 percent, to close at 2,032.08 ahead of the upcoming Chuseok holidays, the Korean equivalent of Thanksgiving.
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