Asian shares mixed after Japanese GDP data
Asian shares were mixed on Monday, with Tokyo helped by better than expected Japanese growth figures and Shanghai boosted by a government pledge to support China’s volatile stock markets.
Hong Kong lost 0.74 percent, or 176.38 points, to end at 23,814.65 on concerns China’s devaluation of the yuan would hurt local companies, while Shanghai rose 0.74 percent, or 17.09 points, to 2,327.49.
Sydney ended up 0.43 percent, or 23.16 points, at 5,379.70 and Seoul dropped 0.75 percent, or 14.94 points, to close at 1,968.52.
Tokyo added 0.49 percent, or 100.81 points, to end at 20,620.26 after news Japan’s economy shrank a lower-than-expected 0.4 percent in the April-June quarter and 1.6 percent from a year earlier.
The weak reading still beat market expectations for a quarterly fall of 0.5 percent, or a 1.8 percent annualized drop, and spurred hopes the government will help prop up the stumbling economy.
Shanghai, meanwhile, ended a see-saw session higher as investors weighed concerns about the health of the economy against a government pledge to support equities for a “number of years” to contain volatility.
The promise, which analysts said was designed to soothe investors’ frazzled nerves, came after the central bank’s shock devaluation of the yuan last week plunged global
financial markets into turmoil.
Hong Kong Hurts
Hong Kong shares were hit by concerns the cheaper yuan will impact local companies, particularly those with high U.S. dollar-debt and retailers that could suffer if mainland tourist numbers fall.
Chinese companies trading in Hong Kong, as measured by the MSCI Index, are already far more expensive than their mainland counterparts.
“In the longer run, the Chinese companies will outperform,” Herald van der Linde, Hong Kong based head of Asia-Pacific equity strategy at HSBC, told Bloomberg News.
Wall Street finished higher Friday after solid industrial produc- tion, wholesale prices and July retail sales data all signaled that the world’s top economy is strengthening.
Gold was at US$1,116.46 compared to US$1,121.23 late Friday.
European Stocks Rebound
European stock markets rose on Monday in a quiet start to a week that is set to be dominated by more developments over China and Greece.
London’s benchmark FTSE 100 index edged up 0.01 percent to stand at 6,551.67 points nearing midday in the capital, with gains capped by a weak mining sector.
Frankfurt’s DAX 30 won 0.54 percent to 11,044.62 points and the CAC-40 in Paris climbed 0.65 percent to 4,988.67 compared with Friday’s close.
Europe’s main stock markets had closed slightly lower on Friday at the end of a turbulent week for equities and other financial markets, triggered by concerns over the Chinese and Greek economies.
“European markets have started the week higher, buoyed by Greece finally approving their new bailout deal — however, the UK market continues to underperform, as weaker commodity prices weigh on the mining and oil-heavy FTSE 100 index,” said Rebecca O’Keeffe, head of investment at stockbroker Interactive Investor.
Athens’ main stocks index was up 0.72 percent at 678.76 points in Monday trading. In other markets: — Mumbai fell 0.67 percent, or 189.04 points, to 27,878.27.
Bank of Baroda gained 15.15 percent to 212.40 rupees, while Agro firm KSCL slipped 16.97 percent to rupees 499.70.
— Malaysia’s main index fell 1.52 percent, or 24.28 points, to close at 1,572.54.
RHB Capital lost 2.08 percent to 6.58 ringgit, Malayan Banking dropped 1.21 percent to 8.19 while Genting Malaysia added 1.55 percent to 3.94 ringgit.
— Bangkok fell 0.37 percent, or 5.18 points, to 1,408.74.
Power firm Electricity Generating lost 1.61 percent to 153.00 baht, while oil company PTT dropped 1.66 percent to 297.00 baht.
— Singapore closed 1.51 percent, or 46.90 points, lower at 3,067.35.
Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp fell 1.64 percent to SG$9.60 and oil rig maker Keppel Corp tumbled 1.09 percent to SG$7.27.
— Wellington gained 0.54 percent, or 30.97 points, to 5,727.42.
Contact Energy rose 1.55 percent to NZ$5.24 and Spark New Zealand was up 4.32 percent at NZ$2.775.
Jakarta was closed for a public holiday.
— Manila fell 0.97 percent, or 71.60 points, to 7,336.84.
Top- traded Universal Robina Corp. lost 1.05 percent to 188.00 pesos, while BDO Unibank ended 3.01 percent down to 99.90 pesos.