Asian shares dart between gains and losses before key China data
Asian shares veered between small losses and gains on Friday as investors awaited key China trade and lending data, and as worries over Sino-U.S. trade tensions countered optimism rooted in expectations of a Federal Reserve rate cut this month.
“Markets have enjoyed a bit of a calm spot in the U.S.-China trade war saga since the announcement of a truce and restarting of trade talks at the G20 meeting. Unfortunately, headlines are once again beginning to emerge,” ANZ analysts wrote in a morning note.
“While this wasn’t a big market mover, it does serve as a reminder that things could flare up again,” they said.
- MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (MIAPJ0000PUS) was last up 0.1%. Chinese shares rose, with the CSI300 (CSI300) adding 0.7%.
- Australian shares (AXJO) dipped 0.1% and Japan’s Nikkei stock index (N225) turned higher after small early losses, adding 0.14%.
- South Korea’s KOSPI (KS11) was up 0.37%.
- The dollar fell 0.05% against the yen to 108.43 , while the euro (EUR=) gained 0.12% higher to buy $1.1265.
- The dollar index (DXY), which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was down 0.08% at 96.970.
- Oil prices picked up as U.S. oil producers in the Gulf of Mexico cut by output by more than half, in the face of a tropical storm and as tensions in the Middle East remained.
- Global benchmark Brent crude (LCOc1) gained 0.60% to $66.92 per barrel.
- U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude (CLc1) was up 0.58% to $60.55 a barrel.
- Gold prices, dulled by the stronger-than-expected U.S. consumer inflation data, regained their shine thanks to renewed trade worries and rate cut expectations. Spot gold last traded up 0.28% at $1,407.60 per ounce.
- U.S. Treasury yields had jumped on Thursday after demand was weak for a $16 billion 30-year bond auction and after the U.S. Labor Department said its consumer price index excluding food and energy rose 0.3% in June, the biggest increase since January 2018.