Asian stocks tread cau­tiously

The Myanmar Times - - International Business -

ASIAN stock mar­kets drifted yes­ter­day and the dol­lar was vir­tu­ally un­moved with in­vestors bid­ing their time as cru­cial cen­tral bank gath­er­ings in the United States and Ja­pan kick off.

The Fed heads into one of its most keenly awaited pol­icy meet­ings af­ter weeks of spec­u­la­tion that has fanned volatil­ity across global trad­ing floors, with in­vestors split on whether it will lift in­ter­est rates.

At the same time opin­ion is di­vided on what the Bank of Ja­pan’s in­ten­tions are, with ex­pec­ta­tions for fresh stim­u­lus tem­pered by a lack of con­crete prom­ises from Tokyo, de­spite weak growth.

The un­cer­tainty lead­ing up to the meet­ing is keep­ing traders at bay, Chris We­ston, chief mar­ket an­a­lyst in Mel­bourne at IG Ltd, said.

“No one is pre­pared to take on too much risk ahead of the Bank of Ja­pan and the Fed Open Mar­ket Com­mit­tee meet­ings,” he told Bloomberg News.

Tokyo’s Nikkei in­dex swung to and fro through the day be­fore end­ing 0.2 per­cent lower.

Hong Kong shed 0.1pc by the close and Shang­hai lost 0.1pc fol­low­ing healthy gains on Septem­ber 19. Syd­ney added 0.2pc and Seoul was 0.5pc higher, while Sin­ga­pore shed 0.2pc.

Cur­rency mar­kets were also sub­dued ahead of the bank an­nounce­ments, which are due to­day.

The dol­lar edged down to 101.70 yen from 101.88 yen in New York while the euro was at US$1.1185 from $1.1175.

“It’s dif­fi­cult to buy into the mar­ket when you don’t know what will hap­pen,” said Hiroy­asu Iida, the head of in­vest­ment re­search cen­tre at Aizawa se­cu­ri­ties.

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