Asian Shares pull ahead after encouraging Chinese data
Asian shares advanced on Monday as investors breathed a sigh of relief after encouraging Chinese data suggested the world’s second-biggest economy may be starting to stabilize thanks to ramped-up stimulus from Beijing.
Trading was expected to be light as Japan was shut for a public holiday.
- MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gave up losses to be 0.2% higher at 526.72 points. It fell a little more than 1% last week, snapping five straight weeks of gains.
- Australian shares slipped 0.4%.
- South Korea’s KOSPI was mostly flat.
- Chinese shares pared early losses with the blue-chip index up 0.4%.
- Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index added 0.3%.
- In currency markets, the Australian dollar, often played as a liquid proxy for the Chinese yuan, jumped after the data to a high of $0.7033, a level not seen since July 4.
- The greenback was a tad higher at 96.871 against a basket of major currencies.
- The dollar index fell for three days in a row as markets fully priced in the chance of a 25-basis-point (bps) cut to U.S. interest rates. There is also a small probability of a 50 bps cut.
- Against the Japanese yen, the dollar ticked up from near the lowest since early June at 108.04 while the single currency was slightly lower at $1.1267 after three successive sessions of gains.