Asian markets retreated in early trading Thursday, as geopolitical tensions and the inverted U.S. Treasury yield curve weighed on investors concerned about a global economic slowdown.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin that he expects Chinese officials to travel to Washington for renewed trade negotiations, but did not give a timeline, Bloomberg News reported. He did not say if a previously scheduled September meeting would take place. Mnuchin also told Bloomberg that the U.S. does not plan in intervening in the U.S. dollar market for the time being, though “situations could change in the future.”
Japan’s Nikkei NIK, -0.09% fell 0.5% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index HSI, +0.34% slid 0.6%. The Shanghai Composite SHCOMP, -0.10% retreated 0.2% while the smaller-cap Shenzhen Composite 399106, -0.17% inched down 0.1%. South Korea’s Kospi 180721, -0.40% declined 0.2%, while benchmark indexes in Taiwan Y9999, +0.27% , Singapore STI, +0.83% and Indonesia JAKIDX, +0.12% were mixed. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 XJO, +0.10% slipped 0.1%.
Among individual stocks, e-commerce company Rakuten 4755, +2.36% rose in Tokyo trading, while Honda 7267, -0.80% and Nissan 7201, -0.49% fell. In Hong Kong, Geely Automobile 175, -0.50% dropped, along with tech giant Tencent 700, +0.38% and casino operator Galaxy Entertainment 27, -0.20% . Samsung 005930, -1.70% and SK Hynix 000660, +0.00% retreated in South Korea, and Beach Energy BPT, +1.75% rose in Australia.