February 23, 2024

Japanese Stocks Leading Asian Losses As Risk Sentiment Takes A Hit

On Tuesday, Japanese stocks were leading losses in Asia-Pacific markets, as risk-off sentiment took hold due to the global economic situation.

Indexes fall

There was a 1.77% decline in the Japanese Nikkei 225 index, as it closed at 26,336.66, while a 1.64% fall in the Topix index saw it end the day at 1,883.3. There were losses recorded in tech-related stocks, such as Fanuc and SoftBank Group of about 4.54% and 4.28%, respectively.

The afternoon trading session saw a 1.13% decline in the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong and a 1.88% loss was also recorded in the Hang Sang Tech index. There was a 9% fall in the shares of BYD, the Chinese electric car maker listed in Hong Kong. There was also a 5% loss in heavyweight Alibaba.

As for the mainland Chinese markets, they were also on the course of declines for the second consecutive day over fears of tough COVID-19 measures. There was a 0.97% fall in the Shanghai Composite index, which brought it to 3,281.47, while a 1.41% decline in the Shenzhen Component brought it to 12,439.27.

As for the Australian S&P/ASX 200 index, it was trading flat for the day. There was also a 1.21% fall in the MSCI’s index of Asia-Pacific shares that do not include Japan.

Company news

As far as data is concerned, Tuesday was a quiet day for the markets, but investors were gearing up for Wednesday’s US inflation data and the GDP report in China later in the week. There is also a meeting of the Bank of Korea scheduled for this week.

In terms of company news, Toyota Motor, the Japanese car maker announced on Monday that the suspension of one of their production lines would be extended. This was because the company was looking to investigate the reason for one of their vehicles.

The suspension at the Motomachi plant is expected to impact about 4,000 units, but the company said that it would not change the global production plan. There was a 1.65% fall in the shares of Toyota.

US markets

There was a decline in major indexes in the US ahead of the earnings season. A 0.52% drop was seen in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which closed at 31,173.84. A fall of 1.15% was also seen in the S&P 500 which brought it to 3,854.43, while a 2.26% drop was recorded in the Nasdaq Composite which brought it to 11,372.60.

The US-listed shares of Nio, the electric automaker shed almost 9% overnight because of the lockdown concerns in China and there was a 5.16% fall in the company’s shares listed in Hong Kong.

The US dollar index, which measures the performance of the currency against a basket of its peers, managed to break past the 108 thresholds, as it rose to 108.352. Meanwhile, the Japanese yen had weakened against the US dollar on Monday and was trading at a value of 137.38, as Japan’s central bank does not seem likely to change its monetary policy.

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