Asia report: Most markets higher as investors digest China trade data
Most markets in Asia finished in the green on Tuesday, as investors digested fresh trade data out of China, while trading was suspended for the day in Hong Kong.
In Japan, the Nikkei 225 was up 0.18% at 23,601.78, as the yen weakened 0.11% against the dollar to last trade at JPY 105.45.
Uniqlo owner Fast Retailing was down 0.54% and technology giant SoftBank Group lost 1.73%, while robotics specialist Fanuc was 4.23% firmer.
Suppliers to US consumer technology giant Apple were also in positive territory, with Murata Manufacturing up 3.92% and Taiyo Yuden ahead 3.93%.
Those moves came after Apple’s shares rocketed on Wall Street overnight, ahead of the expected unveiling of its latest iPhone model later in the week.
The broader Topix index ended its session ahead 0.35%, closing the day at 1,649.10.
On the mainland, the Shanghai Composite eked out gains of 0.04% to 3,359.75, and the smaller, technology-heavy Shenzhen Composite was 0.65% firmer at 2,304.19.
In fresh data out of China, the country’s exports and imports both hit new records in September in renminbi-denominated terms, according to a Reuters report.
On a dollar-denominated basis, the country’s exports were up 9.9% year-on-year in September, just shy of the 10% improvement expected by analysts polled by Reuters.
Hong Kong’s equity markets were suspended for the day due to Typhoon Nangka, while in Seoul, the Kospi went against the regional trend, losing 0.03% to 2,403.15.
The blue-chip technology stocks were higher on the Korean peninsula, with Samsung Electronics rising 0.83% and chipmaker SK Hynix ahead 3.16%.
Apple supplier LG Display joined the iPhone 12 party as well, rising 1.57% by the end of trading.
“Markets in Asia were little changed on Tuesday as China reported trade data,” noted London Capital Group head of research Jasper Lawler.
“Chinese stocks had led gains across Asia on Monday as more local investors got onboard the idea of more favourable treatment from the United States in a Biden presidency.
“Action from the People’s Bank of China to curb strength in the yuan by removing some restrictions on selling the currency short seemed to bolster confidence.”
Oil prices were higher as the region went to bed, with Brent crude last up 1.15% at $42.20 per barrel, and West Texas Intermediate adding 1.7% to $40.10.
In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 added 1.04% by end-of-play, closing at 6,195.70, with coal miners putting in a mixed performance amid reports that China has stopped taking coal imports from the sunburnt country.
BHP was down 0.36% in Sydney, with New Hope Corporation sliding 7.31% and South32 losing 1.37%.
Whitehaven Coal, on the other hand, was ahead 0.51%.
Across the Tasman Sea, New Zealand’s S&P/NZX 50 was 0.78% firmer at 12,453.85, with medical products firm Ebos Group rising 2.4% to a new record close.
The down under dollars were in a mixed position against the greenback, with the Aussie last 0.12% weaker at AUD 1.3888, while the Kiwi strengthened 0.35% to NZD 1.4992.