Most Asian stocks down as pol­icy fears re­turn

The Myanmar Times - - International Business -

EX­PEC­TA­TIONS the US will hike in­ter­est rates and the EU will also tighten mon­e­tary pol­icy dragged most Asian and Euro­pean mar­kets lower yes­ter­day, but Tokyo chalked up a third-straight gain as a weaker yen helped ex­porters.

In­vestors were given a lead by their US coun­ter­parts af­ter com­ments from top Fed­eral Re­serve of­fi­cials fanned spec­u­la­tion it will lift bor­row­ing costs by the end of the year.

Talk of an in­crease re­turned af­ter data last week showed US factory ac­tiv­ity re­bounded in Septem­ber, while trad­ing floors gear up ahead of a cru­cial jobs re­port to­mor­row.

Bloomberg also cited un­named Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank of­fi­cials as say­ing there was an “in­for­mal con­sen­sus” that it should grad­u­ally scale back its bond-buy­ing pro­gram in steps of 10 bil­lion eu­ros.

Ja­pan’s ex­porters were lifted by the weaker yen, send­ing the Nikkei stock in­dex to end up 0.5 per­cent, ex­tend­ing a rally to three straight days.

Hong Kong posted a third gain, adding 0.4pc, with the Hang Seng buoyed by re­cent up­beat China data and the im­pend­ing open­ing of a linkup with the Shen­zhen stock ex­change that could see fresh funds flood in.

But most other Asian mar­kets strug­gled. Syd­ney fell 0.6pc, Seoul lost 0.1pc, Manila tum­bled 1.2pc and Welling­ton was off 1.1pc. Sin­ga­pore was flat.

The stronger dol­lar also sent gold tum­bling al­most $39 to $1270, its low­est lev­els since mid-June. –

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