Asia Pacific Market: Stocks end mixed – Business Standard

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Pacific share market closed mixed on Monday, 23 May 2016, as investors turned cautious due to weaker commodity prices and amid a lack of major consensus from the Group of Seven meetings between finance ministers and central bankers. Risk sentiments also pressured by caution ahead of preliminary U.S. data and speeches by Fed policymakers this week that will likely give cues on a possible rate increase by the U.S. Fed in June.The market was reacting to G-7 meetings taking place in Japan over the weekend and this week. Officials there have yet to come to an agreement on how to address slack in the global economy, for example, through coordinated fiscal and monetary policies. But the prospect of higher U.S. interest rates remains at the top of investors’ list of concerns. Expectations that the Federal Reserve could tighten as early as June ticked up last week.Investors will listen closely to a slew of U.S. Federal Reserve policymakers this week, including Fed Chair Janet Yellen who appears at a panel event hosted by Harvard University on Friday, to gauge how soon they will raise interest rates.The key precondition for a rate hike that U.S. policy-setters outlined in April was signs of economic growth picking up in the second quarter and of employment and inflation firming up, minutes from the FOMC meeting showed last week. With no second-quarter GDP data due until the end of July, investors are likely to focus on the second estimate of U.S. first-quarter growth due out on Friday.Among Asian boursesAustralia Market falls to lowest level since May 6Australian share market finished session lower, due to heavy selloff in energy, materials, and industrial stocks. At close of trade, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index declined 32.40 points, or 0.61%, to 5318.90. The benchmark hit its lowest point since lowest point since May 6. The broader All Ordinaries fell 30.30 points, or 0.56%, to 5384.90. Falling stocks outnumbered advancing ones on the Australia Stock Exchange by 548 to 479 and 310 ended unchanged. The S&P/ASX 200 VIX, which measures the implied volatility of S&P/ASX 200 options, was up 2.99% to 17.780.Shares of energy and mining companies were the biggest losers in the ASX bourses, as oil prices fell and weakness in iron ore prices. Dalian iron ore futures dropped 5.5%, reaching their lowest since early March. BHP Billiton tumbed 2.6% to A$18.37 and Rio Tinto fell 2.3% to A$44. Fortescue Metals fell 4% to A$2.91. Origin Energy lost 3.5% to A$5.49 and Santos erased 3.5% to A$5.49. Woodside was off 1.1% to A$26.79. Bucking the wider trend, Bluescope Steel jumped 7.6% after the steelmaker cheered investors by lifting its earnings guidance.Japan Stocks fall on stronger yenThe Japan share market declined, due to yen appreciation against dollar after Group of Seven finance ministers voiced concern over the sputtering global economy and pressed Tokyo not to weaken its currency. Risk aversion selloff were also pressured by Japan’s customs-cleared trade statistics for April, released just before the opening bell, showed that the trade surplus expanded due mainly to a steep drop in imports. The 225-issue Nikkei average lost 81.75 points, or 0.49%, to end at 16,654.60. The Topix index of all first-section issues finished down 4.72 points, or 0.35%, at 1,338.68.Japanese export-related companies were hit by the stronger currency — a minus for their profitability. The yen’s ascent came as Japan’s customs-cleared trade statistics for April, released just before the opening bell, showed that the trade surplus expanded due mainly to a steep drop in imports. Automakers Toyota and Fuji Heavy, electronic parts producer Murata Manufacturing and industrial robot manufacturer Fanuc met with selling. Electronics maker Sony met with selling amid a wait-and-see mood before the announcement Tuesday of earnings estimates for fiscal 2016 after it suspended a plant in Kumamoto Prefecture due to powerful earthquakes in April.By contrast, mega-banks Mitsubishi UFJ and Sumitomo Mitsui, securities firm Nomura Holdings and shipping firm Mitsui O.S.K. Lines were buoyant. Mobile phone carriers SoftBank Group and KDDI were also on the plus side.Trade statistics from the Ministry of Finance released on Monday, showing Japanese exports down 10.1% YoY to 5889.17 billion yen, while imports fell 23.3% YoY to 5065.69 billion yen. As a result, the trade balance showed a surplus of 823.5 billion yen in April, up from a surplus of Y754.2 billion in March and a deficit of Y58.3 billion in April 2015.China Stocks end higherMainland China finished the session higher on the back of bottom fishing on recently battered stocks. But, gains were limited amid lingering concerns the government holds off on further policy stimulus. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index advanced 18.16 points, or 0.64%, to 2843.65. The CSI 300 Index, measuring exchanges in Shanghai and Shenzhen, grew 9 points, or 0.29%, to 3087.22.Shares of Chinese mainland oil plays ended mixed, with Sinopec giving up early gains to close down 0.16%, while China Oilfield gained 0.57%.Shares of consumer staples industry gained on bets companies will endure a deepening slowdown. Henan Shuanghui Investment & Development Co., a producer of frozen foods, jumped 2.3%. Kweichow Moutai Co., the biggest producer of Moutai liquor, rose for a third day, adding 1.2%.Apple suppliers Goertek and Han’s Laser advanced at least 1.3%, on reports the U.S. smartphone maker asked suppliers to prepare for an output of 72 million to 78 million units of the iPhone 7 series by the end of 2016, the highest target in about two years.Hong Kong Market ends mixedThe Hong Kong stock market finished mixed in volatile yet quiet trade, amid concerns about slowdown in the manufacturing economy after private survey conducted by China Minsheng Banking Corp. and China Academy of New Supply-side Economics showing the China Minxin Manufacturing Index slid 1.1 percentage points to 45.8 in May from the previous month. The benchmark Hang Seng Index dropped 43.17 points, or 0.22%, to 19809.03 points. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index, benchmark measure of performance of mainland China enterprises, rose 4.63 points, or 0.06%, to 8308.21. Turnover reduced to HK$43.8 billion from HK$52.6 billion on Friday.BOCHK (02388) put on 2% to HK$22.9 on reports that it plans to sell its stake in Chiyu Banking to Xiamen International Bank and Xiamen municipal government for an estimated valuation of US$2 billion. It was the top blue-chip winner today.Tencent (00700) edged up 0.4% to HK$159.1 as China domestic news media reported that the internet giant’s unit Tencent OS may join hands with InFocus in the US to launch first smartphone by the end of the month. It was also reported that Tencent is in talks with SoftBank Group to buy its majority stake in Supercell, the Finland-based maker of mobile games.Lenovo (00992) dipped 2% to HK$4.88 ahead of its earnings report on Thursday (26 May). BNP Paribas estimated that the PC maker will report operating profit of US$253 million for the three months ended March 2016.Property counters were pressured on rising expectations of rate hike in June. CK Property (01113) and Wharf (00004) slipped 1% to HK$45.25 and HK$41.35. SHKP (00016) fell 1% to HK$86.95.Sensex drops for fourth day in a rowStocks of public sector banks and index heavyweights HDFC and Infosys led losses for the two key benchmark indices. The barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, fell 71.54 points or 0.28% to settle at 25,230.36. The Nifty 50 index fell 18.65 points or 0.24% to settle at 7,731.05.Shares of pharma major Lupin extended previous session’s steep losses triggered by concerns surrounding its Goa facility as it has yet to resolve concerns raised by US Food and Drug Administrator’s (USFDA) observations on the manufacturing unit. Index heavyweight and cigarette major ITC extended previous trading session’s gains triggered by the company announcing a 1:2 bonus share issue at the fag end of the trading session at the time of the announcement of its Q4 March 2016 results. Multi Commodity Exchange of India (MCX) surged after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) after trading hours on Friday, 20 May 2016, announced the removal of the restrictions placed on purchase of the company’s shares by foreign institutional investors (FIIs) with immediate effect.Bharat Heavy Electricals (Bhel) edged lower and Power Grid Corporation of India edged higher after the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) announced changes in the constituents of its indices as part a semi-annual reconstitution of the indices. National Aluminium Company (Nalco) edged higher after the company said that a meeting of the board of directors of the company will be held on 25 May 2016 to consider the proposal for buyback of equity shares of the company.Elsewhere in the Asia Pacific region: New Zealand’s NZX50 was down 0.45% to 6876.83. South Korea’s KOSPI index sank 0.31% to 1949.41. Taiwan’s Taiex index rose 2.62% to 8344.44. Malaysia’s KLCI rose 0.37% to 1634.89. Indonesia’s Jakarta Composite index added 0.67% to 4743.66. Singapore’s Straits Times index grew 0.11% to 2766.93.Powered by Capital Market – Live News