Investors respond to US coronavirus relief package

Vehicles are reflected in a window while electronic signs display stock information at the Australian Stock Exchange, which is operated by ASX.

Lisa Maree | Bloomberg | Getty Images

SINGAPORE – The Asia-Pacific markets struggled for gains by Monday afternoon as investors responded to last week’s US job report that raised expectations and sparked hopes for a faster economic recovery.

Australian equities closed the session in green, but made the most of their previous gains. The ASX 200 benchmark rose 0.43% to 6,739.60 as most sectors traded higher, with the heavily weighted financial sub-index adding 0.5%. Major banking and mining stocks rose the most: Commonwealth Bank shares rose 1.01%, while Rio Tinto rose 2.91%, Fortescue rose 0.5% and BHP rose 2.38%.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 reversed gains to close 0.42% at 28,743.25 as bank shares advanced. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group’s shares rose 2.83%, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group added 2.14% and Nomura shares rose 3.17%. Elsewhere, the Topix index also gave up earlier gains, ending 0.14% lower at 1,893.58.

Meanwhile, South Korea’s Kospi tumbled 1% to 2,996.11. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index fell 1.85% in late afternoon trading, while the Hang Seng Tech Index fell 6.69%.

Chinese mainland shares also fell: the Shanghai composition fell 2.3% to 3,4211.41, while the Shenzhen component lost 3.81% to 13,863.81. Elsewhere, equities in India and Singapore rose in afternoon trading.

Monday’s session in Asia-Pacific follows a wild day in US markets last Friday, when shares screamed of a sharp sell-off as a stronger-than-expected non-farming report improves optimism for a faster economic recovery .

“Investors remain wary of the impact the massive Biden fiscal experiment will have on longer-term interest rates, which will provide a fragile equity environment,” analysts at ANZ Research said in a morning note. “The defense can rule until mid-March (Federal Market Committee).”

US emergency package

Currencies and oil

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button