Asian shares mixed as pandemic saps buying momentum
Asian shares were mixed in Asia on Wednesday as uncertainty over the pandemic sapped the buying enthusiasm that has been driving prices higher.
The selling followed a deeper pullback on Wall Street and in France, Germany and elsewhere after the European Union’s executive arm said this year’s recession caused by the coronavirus pandemic will be deeper than forecast. It also said next year’s expected rebound could be weaker than expected.
“The economic data that has come out over the past couple of months has actually beaten even the most optimistic economists, so in that scenario it’s not surprising to see a euphoria-driven rally in the market,” said Megan Horneman, director of portfolio strategy at Verdence Capital Advisors.
- Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 dropped 0.3% in morning trading to 22,545.36.
- Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 dipped 0.5% to 5,982.10.
- South Korea’s Kospi shed 0.3% to 2,157.70.
- Hong Kong’s Hang Seng reversed early losses, gaining 0.3% to 26,059.92.
- The Shanghai Composite also bounced higher, adding 0.3% to 3,355.53.
- Benchmark U.S. crude added 6 cents to $40.68 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It slipped a penny to settle at $40.62 per barrel after earlier flipping between losses and gains on Tuesday.
- Brent crude, the international standard, rose 5 cents to $43.13 per barrel.
- The dollar inched up to 107.64 Japanese yen from 107.53 yen on Tuesday.
- The euro rose to $1.1279 from $1.1274.