Asian shares eased on Thursday
Asian shares eased on Thursday, with caution prevailing as investors awaited some kind of resolution to Sino-U.S. trade negotiations. The euro remained under pressure ahead of the European Central Bank meeting.
- MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan edged 0.2 percent lower on Thursday.
- Japan’s Nikkei average fell 0.8 percent.
- Shanghai Composite stood almost flat.
- blue-chip CSI 300 shed 0.9 percent.
- Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.5 percent.
The Canadian and Australian dollar sank to two-month lows on Wednesday as traders scaled back holdings on expectations policy-makers would leave interest rates alone in the foreseeable future or even lower them to counter their softening economies.
- The dollar eased 0.1 percent to 111.70 yen.
- The dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six of its peers, barely moved.
- The Aussie dollar last changed hands at $0.7042, up 0.1 percent on the day.
Oil edged up on Thursday amid ongoing OPEC-led supply cuts and U.S. sanctions against exporters Venezuela and Iran, although prices were prevented from rising further by record U.S. crude output and rising commercial fuel inventories.
- U.S. crude futures rose 0.3 percent to $56.40 per barrel moving closer to its 3-1/2-month high of $57.88 touched Friday.
- International benchmark Brent futures gained 0.5 percent to $66.32 per barrel.