Asian Shares Mixed As Investors Await US Inflation Data

Asian stocks ended mixed on Tuesday as investors awaited U.S. inflation data for more clues on the health of the world’s largest economy and when the Federal Reserve could start rolling back easy credit and other stimulus.

China’s Shanghai Composite Index tumbled 52.77 points, or 1.4 percent, to 3,662.60 as investors fretted about the regulatory crackdown on technology companies and a widening liquidity crisis for the country’s most indebted property developer.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index slumped 331.58 points, or 1.2 percent, to 25,502.23, with Chinese tech stocks in focus after authorities told the country’s leading tech companies to stop blocking each other’s links on their sites.

Meanwhile, Japanese share rose notably amid continued optimism about new fiscal stimulus ahead of a ruling party leadership vote this month.

There was also come cheer on the data front, with survey data from the Ministry of Finance showing that confidence among larger Japanese companies turned positive in the third quarter.

The Nikkei 225 Index climbed 222.73 points, or 0.7 percent, to 30,670.10, while the broader Topix closed 1 percent higher at 2,118.87.

Seoul stocks rose for the third straight day after central bank data showed export prices in the country grew 18.6 percent year-on-year in August. The Kospi advanced 20.97 points, or 0.7 percent, to 3,148.83.

Australian markets reversed an early slide to end higher after Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe insisted that rates won’t increase until 2024. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 12.10 points, or 0.2 percent, to 7,437.30, while the broader All Ordinaries Index ended up 14.20 points, or 0.2 percent, at 7,740.30.

Energy stocks led the advance, helped by higher oil prices. Beach Energy, Woodside Petroleum, Oil Search and Santos jumped 5-7 percent.

New Zealand shares fell, with the benchmark NZX-50 Index ending down 62.28 points, or 0.5 percent, at 13,108.61, dragged down by energy stocks.

Meridian Energy gave up 2.7 percent, Mercury NZ declined 2.9 percent and Contact Energy dropped 1.4 percent. Top stock Fisher & Paykel Healthcare lost 3.5 percent.

U.S. stocks rose broadly overnight as traders went bargain hunting following the downward move seen over the past several sessions.

The Dow climbed 0.8 percent and the S&P 500 edged up 0.2 percent to snap five-session losing streaks, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index slid marginally to extend losses for the fourth straight session.

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