Asian traders, in­vestors bet on Clin­ton win

> But cau­tion lingers, sur­prise Trump vic­tory not ruled out

The Sun (Malaysia) - - SUNBIZ -

SYD­NEY/SIN­GA­PORE: In­vestors and traders in Asia in­di­cated yes­ter­day they are mostly in­creas­ing their bets on Demo­cratic nom­i­nee Hil­lary Clin­ton win­ning the US pres­i­den­tial race af­ter the sec­ond of three de­bates with Repub­li­can nom­i­nee Don­ald Trump.

Some though re­main cau­tious, say­ing there was still a chance of a sur­prise Trump win. They said many in the mar­kets were wary af­ter be­ing burned by the shock “Brexit” vote in June.

MSCI’s broad­est in­dex of Asi­aPa­cific shares out­side Ja­pan edged up around 0.1% by mid-af­ter­noon in Sin­ga­pore yes­ter­day, while Wall Street in­dex fu­tures were lit­tle changed af­ter Clin­ton ex­changed barbs with Trump in the tele­vised event, which was shown live across trad­ing rooms dur­ing Asia’s morn­ing.

The 90-minute de­bate quickly turned into an ac­ri­mo­nious dis­cus­sion of a 2005 video that emerged on Fri­day in which Trump was heard us­ing vul­gar lan­guage and talk­ing about grop­ing women. The con­tro­versy has caused some se­nior Repub­li­cans to with­draw their sup­port for him.

“For those that think that Trump has a very, very low chance of win­ning the US elec­tions it might be a good time to go long on global eq­ui­ties,” said Itay Tuch­man, Citi’s head of mar­kets for Aus­tralia and New Zealand.

Mar­kets could be pre­ma­turely pric­ing in a Clin­ton vic­tory, as they did dur­ing the “Brexit” vote in June, when the United King­dom voted un­ex­pect­edly to leave the Euro­pean Union, said Lee Jin Yang, re­search an­a­lyst for Aberdeen As­set Man­age­ment in Sin­ga­pore.

“We need to re­mem­ber that Brexit only be­came a key fo­cus one week be­fore the vote. The mar­ket had priced in near zero prob­a­bil­ity of it hap­pen­ing but it did.”

Ac­cord­ing to a CNN on­line poll, Clin­ton won the de­bate by 57% to 34%.

But Josh Crabb, head of Asian eq­ui­ties at Old Mu­tual Global In­vestors in Hong Kong, said he is wary of such polls – es­pe­cially af­ter Brexit.

“The way that main­stream me­dia, and a lot of com­men­ta­tors, in­ter­pret the out­come of the de­bate may be dif­fer­ent to what the vot­ing pub­lic in gen­eral takes away,” Crabb said. “That is a con­cern be­cause of­ten, a lot of these polls have not been quite as ac­cu­rate as peo­ple are ex­pect­ing.”

Mathan So­ma­sun­darum, a strate­gist at stock bro­ker­age Bail­lieu Holst in Syd­ney, said a Clin­ton vic­tory would re­duce the risk of the United States adopt­ing a strong trade pro­tec­tion­ist pol­icy. Trump has been highly crit­i­cal of the Nafta trade deal with Mex­ico and Canada as well as the Trans-Pa­cific Part­ner­ship, which has yet to be rat­i­fied by the US Congress. He has promised to build a bor­der wall and make Mex­ico pay for it.

“I would ex­pect the US dol­lar to weaken and you would ex­pect then there is some pres­sure com­ing off emerg­ing mar­kets, and then com­modi­ties, which (are a) proxy for emerg­ing mar­kets,” he saud,

“China, com­modi­ties and the Aussie dol­lar should do bet­ter.” – Reuters

A trader work­ing at his desk as the sec­ond Trump-Clin­ton de­bate is shown on tele­vi­sion at Citibank’s trad­ing floor in Syd­ney, Aus­tralia, yes­ter­day.

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