Asian stocks mixed in muted trading, echoing Wall St close


TOKYO – Asian stocks were mixed on Monday, echoing Wall Street’s mixed close last week.

Japan’s Nikkei benchmark added 0.2% in morning trading to 28,381.13. South Korea’s Kospi slipped 0.3% to 3,147.23, while Australia’s S & P / ASX 200 was up less than 0.1% to 7,031.50. The Hong Kong Hang Seng slipped 0.9% to 28,217.82, while the Shanghai Composite lost 0.4% to 3,473.43.

Several central bank rate decisions are expected in the region this week, New Zealand, South Korea and Indonesia.

Although Japanese shares have been higher, risks remain as the government prepares to extend a “state of emergency” to reduce coronavirus infections in some areas, beyond the initial end date of May 31. said Yeap Jun Rong, market strategist at IG in Singapore.

Uneven deployment of COVID-19 vaccines remains a factor for regional markets. Although vaccinations have gradually started in Japan, for healthcare professionals and the elderly, a separate effort to vaccinate people at different sites began on Monday. So far, around 5% of the population has received at least one injection.

On Friday on Wall Street, the S&P 500 ended down 0.1% at 4,155.86, losing 0.4% for the week. This followed a loss of 1.4% the week before.

The Nasdaq slipped 0.5% to 13,470.99. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fared better, gaining 0.4% to 34,207.84. The Russell 2000 Index rose 0.3% to 2,215.27.

Concerns remain that inflation could cause central banks to back down on their efforts to support growth. The US Federal Reserve has said it expects any rise in inflation to be temporary.

Analysts also said investors were looking beyond the recovery, and wary of potential tax changes and the impact they could have on growth. Bitcoin, whose prices have become jerky lately, is also on the minds of investors.

In energy trading, benchmark US crude gained 58 cents to $ 64.16 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. He earned $ 1.64 to $ 63.58 on Friday. Brent, the international standard, gained 50 cents to $ 66.94 a barrel.

In currency trading, the US dollar slipped to 108.87 Japanese yen from 108.91 yen on Friday night. The euro was unchanged at $ 1.2181.

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