Asian stock markets are trading mostly lower on Wednesday, following the lack of cues from Wall Street overnight, as traders react negatively to the latest geopolitical tensions between the US and China. They are also somewhat hesitant to make significant moves due to persisting worries about global economic growth amid rising interest rates. Asian markets closed mixed on Tuesday.
Traders also look ahead to the release of the US Fed’s meeting minutes and the closely watched monthly jobs data later in the week for insights into future interest rate hikes.
The Australian stock market is modestly lower on Wednesday, giving up some of the gains in the previous three sessions, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 staying just below the 7,300 level, following the lack of cues from Wall Street overnight, with losses in gold miners and financial stocks.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is losing 27.10 points or 0.37 percent to 7,251.90, after hitting a low of 7,259.80 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is down 28.00 points or 0.37 percent to 7,450.90. Australian stocks ended notably higher on Tuesday.
Among major miners, Mineral Resources, Rio Tinto and Fortescue Metals are edging up 0.1 to 0.5 percent each, while BHP Group is edging down 0.2 percent.
Oil stocks are mostly lower. Woodside Energy is losing almost 1 percent, while Origin Energy and Santos are edging down 0.2 to 0.4 percent each. Beach energy is edging up 0.5 percent.
In the tech space, Afterpay owner Block and Xero are edging down 0.2 to 0.5 percent each, while WiseTech Global is losing more than 1 percent. Appen is advancing almost 1 percent and Zip is adding more than 1 percent.
Among the big four banks, ANZ Banking and Commonwealth Bank are losing almost 1 percent each, while National Australia Bank and Westpac are edging down 0.5 percent each.
Among gold miners, Gold Road Resources is losing more than 1 percent, Newcrest Mining is edging down 0.5 percent and Resolute Mining is down almost 1 percent, while Northern Star Resources is edging up 0.1 percent and Evolution Mining is gaining almost 1 percent.
In economic news, the value of retail sales in Australia was up a seasonally adjusted 0.7 percent on month in May, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said on Wednesday – coming in at A$35.524 billion. That was broadly in line with expectations following the flat reading in April. On a yearly basis, sales rose 4.2 percent.
Meanwhile, the services sector in Australia continued to expand in June, albeit at a slower pace, the latest survey from Judo Bank revealed on Wednesday, with a services PMI score of 50.3. That’s down from 52.1 in May, although it remains above the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction. The survey also showed that the composite index slipped to 50.1 in June from 51.6 in May.
In the currency market, the Aussie dollar is trading at $0.668 on Wednesday.
The Japanese stock market is modestly lower on Wednesday, extending the losses in the previous session, with the Nikkei 225 a tad above the 33,300 level, following the lack of cues from Wall Street overnight, with traders reacting service activity data that showed the slowest growth in four months.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index closed the morning session at 33,303.00, down 119.52 points or 0.36 percent, after hitting a low of 33,041.14 earlier. Japanese stocks ended significantly lower on Tuesday.
Market heavyweight SoftBank Group is edging down 0.1 percent and Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing is losing more than 2 percent. Among automakers, Honda and Toyota are edging up 0.1 percent each.
In the tech space, Screen Holdings is edging up 0.2 percent and Advantest is gaining more than 2 percent each, while Tokyo Electron is edging down 0.2 percent.
In the banking sector, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is gaining more than 1 percent, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is edging up 0.2 percent and Mizuho Financial is adding almost 1 percent.
Among the major exporters, and Canon is edging up 0.4 percent and Mitsubishi Electric is gaining more than 1 percent, while Panasonic is losing almost 1 percent. Sony is flat.
There are no other major losers.
Conversely, Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha is surging 6.5 percent and Daiichi Sankyo is gaining more than 4 percent, while Dai-ichi Life and Renesas Electronics are adding almost 4 percent each. Z Holdings is up more than 3 percent, while Nippon Yusen K.K., Mitsui O.S.K. Lines and Suzuki Motor are advancing almost 3 percent each.
In economic news, the services sector in Japan continued to expand in June, albeit at a slower pace, the latest survey from Jibun Bank revealed on Wednesday, with a services PMI score of 54.0. That’s down from the series record of 55.9 in May, although it remains above the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction. The survey also showed that the composite index slipped to 52.1 in June from 54.3 in May.
In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the higher 144 yen-range on Wednesday.
Elsewhere in Asia, Hong Kong is down 1.2 percent, while New Zealand, China, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan are lower by between 0.1 and 0.6 percent each. Malaysia and Indonesia are up 0.1 and 0.2 percent, respectively.
The Wall Street was closed on account of Independence Day holiday on Tuesday. The shares closed slightly higher on Monday.
The major European markets moved to the downside on the day. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 ended 0.1 percent down, Germany’s DAX drifted down 0.26 percent and France’s CAC 40 ended lower by 0.23 percent.
Source: Read Full Article