Monday’s World Markets Outlook: Asia-Pacific

SKorean shares rose Monday as relaxation of some social distancing rules fuelled optimism about the reopening of the broader economy, with China’s interest rate cut adding to the sentiment.

The Korean Won weakened, while the benchmark bond yield was up. The Seoul stock market’s main KOSPI rose 4.44 pts, or 0.23%, at 1,918.07 as of 0218 GMT.

Australian shares fell on Monday as Crude Oil futures slumped amid concerns over plunging demand because of the coronavirus pandemic, and convenience store operator Caltex tumbled after a Canadian suitor dropped its takeover bid.

The S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.2% to 5,478 by 0024 GMT, after posting its fourth straight weekly gain.

In New Zealand, where the government is due to decide on whether to extend or ease a month-long lockdown later in the day, the benchmark bourse S&P/NZX 50 advanced 0.5% at 10,830, heading for a fifth straight session of gains.

 Japanese shares pulled back Monday from a near 6-wk high hit in the previous session, as caution set in before corporate earnings results that are likely to reveal the damage wrought by the novel coronavirus pandemic.

The Nikkei index settled down 1.15% to 19,669.12, led by declines in the consumer discretionary and healthcare sectors.

China and Hong Kong stocks firmed on Monday as a Key Chinese lending rate was cut for the second time this year to shore up the coronavirus-hit economy.

At the midday break, the Shanghai Composite index was up 0.3% at 2,847.13 points.

China’s blue-chip CSI300 index was up 0.22%, with its financial sector sub-index higher by 0.21%, the consumer staples sector up 0.07%, the real estate index down 0.8% and the healthcare sub-index up 0.78%.

Chinese H-shares listed in Hong Kong rose 0.52% to 9,865.97, while the Hang Seng Index was up 0.16% at 24,419.99.

Most Southeast Asian stock markets rose Monday, with Malaysia leading gains, as China, the region’s prime trading partner, cut a key interest rate and promised more measures to prop up an economy battered by the cornonavirus pandemic.

China cut its benchmark lending rate by 20 bpts to 3.85% on expected lines and said it would roll out additional policies to prevent short-term economic shocks from becoming long-term stagnation trends.

Malaysian stocks were the best performers, rising as much as 1.54% to their highest since 12 March.

Singapore’s Straits Times Index edged 0.5% higher, buoyed by telecommunications and Crude Oil stocks.

Thai stocks rose as much as 0.88%, helped by Electronics Industry’s 33.3% jump and Thai-German Products PCL’s 25% leap.

Philippines index bucked the trend, tumbling as much as 1.5% due to declines in financials and telecom stocks. Globe Telecom fell as much as 3.05%, while BDO Unibank shed over 1%.

ASIA-PACIFIC INDICES

Data as of 20 April 2020. All quotes delayed at least 15 mins.

SymbIndexTimeLastChgChg %
.TRXFLDJPPThomson Reuters Equity Japan Index2:46am EDT125.65-0.84-0.66%
.TRXFLDHKPThomson Reuters Equity HK Index2:46am EDT274.68+0.38+0.14%
.TRXFLDINPThomson Reuters Equity India Index2:46am EDT1,065.65+3.00+0.28%
.N225Nikkei Stock Average 2252:15am EDT19,669.12-228.14-1.15%
.HSIHang Seng Index3:01am EDT24,375.15-4.85-0.02%
.AORDASX All Ordinaries Index2:17am EDT5,414.70-130.00-2.34%
.KS11KOSPI Index2:32am EDT1,898.36-16.17-0.84%
.SETISET Composite Index1:29am EDT1,259.10+19.86+1.60%
.JKSEJakarta Composite3:16am EDT4,608.19-26.63-0.57%
.PSIPSE Composite Index12:50am EDT5,733.65-56.32-0.97%
.SSECShanghai Composite Index3:00am EDT2,852.55+14.06+0.50%
.BSESNS&P BSE Sensex3:02am EDT31,653.94+65.22+0.21%
.FTFBMKLCIFTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI3:01am EDT1,423.25+15.91+1.13%
.HNX30HNX 30 Index16 Apr 2020208.94+2.97+1.44%

Have a healthy week, Keep the Faith!

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