Asian Markets In Positive Territory
Asian stock markets are rising on Tuesday following the mostly positive cues from Wall Street and amid hopes for more coronavirus-related stimulus in the U.S. Nevertheless, investors also kept an eye on rising tensions between the U.S. and China after Beijing imposed sanctions on eleven U.S. citizens in retaliation for similar measures by the U.S. earlier.
The Australian market is extending gains from the previous session following the mostly positive cues from Wall Street. However, worries about rising U.S.-China tensions weighed on the market.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is adding 32.30 points or 0.53 percent to 6,142.50, off a high of 6,143.70 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is advancing 32.70 points or 0.52 percent to 6,279.80. Australian stocks closed notably higher on Monday.
The big four banks – National Australia Bank, Westpac, ANZ Banking and Commonwealth Bank – are higher in a range of 1.2 percent to 1.7 percent.
Among the major miners, Rio Tinto and Fortescue Metals are rising more than 1 percent each, while BHP Group is advancing almost 1 percent.
In the oil sector, Oil Search is rising almost 2 percent, Santos is higher by more than 1 percent and Woodside Petroleum is adding almost 1 percent after crude oil prices advanced overnight.
Meanwhile, gold miners are weak even as gold prices rose overnight. Evolution Mining is losing more than 2 percent and Newcrest Mining is lower by more than 1 percent.
Sydney Airport reported a loss for the half year ended June 30 due to the impact from COVID-19 and initiated a A$2 billion equity raising on the Australian Securities Exchange. The airport’s shares are in a trading halt.
In the currency market, the Australian dollar is higher against the U.S. dollar on Tuesday. The local currency was quoted at $0.7169, compared to $0.7167 at close on Monday.
The Japanese market, which resumed trading after a long holiday weekend, is notably higher following the mostly positive cues from Wall Street. In addition, a weaker yen lifted exporters’ shares.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is adding 302.12 points or 1.35 percent to 22,632.06, after earlier rising to a high of 22,638.81. The Japanese market was closed on Monday for a holiday.
Market heavyweight SoftBank Group is losing more than 2 percent, while Fast Retailing is advancing more than 1 percent.
The major exporters are mostly higher on a weaker yen. Panasonic is gaining almost 4 percent, Mitsubishi Electric is rising more than 3 percent and Canon is advancing more than 2 percent, while Sony is declining almost 1 percent.
In the tech space, Advantest is advancing almost 1 percent while Tokyo Electron is down 0.6 percent. In the financial sector, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is gaining more than 3 percent and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is rising more than 2 percent.
Among automakers, Honda Motor is climbing more than 5 percent and Toyota is higher by more than 3 percent.
In the oil sector, Inpex is higher by more than 4 percent and Japan Petroleum is adding more than 2 percent after crude oil prices rose overnight.
Among the other major gainers, Eisai Co. is gaining almost 13 percent, Mitsui Mining & Smelting is higher by more than 12 percent and Pacific Metals is gaining more than 10 percent.
Conversely, Taiyo Yuden is losing more than 6 percent, Bandai Namco Holdings is lower by more than 5 percent and Mitsui OSK Lines is declining almost 4 percent.
In economic news, the Ministry of Finance said Japan had a current account surplus of 167.5 billion yen in June, down 86.6 percent on year. That beat expectations for a surplus of 110 billion yen following the 1,176.8 billion yen surplus in May.
Exports were down 25.7 percent on year to 4.793 trillion yen, while imports sank an annual 14.4 percent to 4.870 trillion yen. The trade deficit was 77.3 billion yen in June following the 556.8 billion yen deficit in May.
The Bank of Japan said that overall bank lending in Japan was up 6.3 percent on year in July, coming in at 572.705 trillion yen. That was shy of expectations for an increase of 6.5 percent but still up from the 6.2 percent gain in June.
In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the lower 106 yen-range on Tuesday.
Elsewhere in Asia, Hong Kong is rising more than 2 percent and South Korea is advancing more than 1 percent. Shanghai, Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia are also higher. New Zealand and Taiwan are edging higher.
On Wall Street, stocks closed mostly higher on Monday after President Donald Trump signed executive orders aimed at extending coronavirus relief to Americans. The executive orders include an extension of expanded unemployment benefits, a deferral of student loan payments through 2020, a federal moratorium on evictions and a payroll tax holiday. Trump signed the orders as lawmakers continue to struggle to reach an agreement on a new coronavirus relief package.
While the tech-heavy Nasdaq fell 42.63 points or 0.4 percent to 10,968.36, the Dow jumped 357.96 points or 1.3 percent to 27,791.44 and the S&P 500 rose 9.19 points or 0.3 percent to 3,360.47.
The major European markets also moved to the upside on Monday. While the German DAX Index inched up by 0.1 percent, the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index and the French CAC 40 Index rose by 0.3 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively.
Crude oil prices climbed higher on Monday, as optimism about energy demand rose a bit after somewhat encouraging factory data from China, and hopes about coronavirus-related stimulus in the U.S. WTI crude for September delivery climbed $0.72 or about 1.7 percent to $41.94 a barrel.
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