Indian Morning Briefing: Asian markets largely down at the start of the week

DJIA         33745.69   199.37   0.59% 
Nasdaq       11146.06     1.10   0.01% 
S&P 500       3965.34    18.78   0.48% 
FTSE 100      7385.52    38.98   0.53% 
Nikkei Stock 27847.74   -52.03  -0.19% 
Hang Seng    17434.85  -557.69  -3.10% 
Kospi         2411.66   -32.82  -1.34% 
SGX Nifty*   18251.50   -96     -0.52% 
*Nov contract 
USD/JPY  140.43-44   +0.03% 
Range    140.50   140.17 
EUR/USD  1.0289-92   -0.34% 
Range    1.0346   1.0289 
CBOT Wheat Dec $8.032 per bushel 
Spot Gold   $1,750.32/oz Unch 
Nymex Crude (NY) $80.26  -$1.38 

Stocks rose on Friday, capping a tumultuous week with investors weighing the outlook for interest rates.

The S&P 500 gained 18.78 points, or 0.5%, to 3965.34, while the Nasdaq Composite edged up 1.10 points, or less than 0.1%, or 11146.06. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 199.37 points, or 0.6%, to 33,745.69. All three indexes have fallen in two of the last three weeks.

Of the 11 sectors in the S&P 500, nine rose on Friday. Shares in energy and communications services were the only laggards.


Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average edged up 0.2% to 27952.96, following last Friday’s gains in most U.S. stock markets. Resilient moves on Wall Street suggest investors are waiting for more clues about the path of U.S. inflation and the Fed’s clarification of its monetary policy, said Tina Teng, market analyst at CMC Markets. Gains on the Nikkei were led by a mix of companies with Sumitomo Metal Mining climbing 3.4%, Yakult Honsha adding 1.4% and Mitsubishi Corp. up 2.0%. USD/JPY was at 140.29, down from 139.82 at Tokyo’s close on Friday.

South Korea’s benchmark, the Kospi, fell 0.7% to 2426.99 in early trade, dragged down by shipbuilding and chemical stocks. Faded hopes of a slowdown in US Fed policy tightening and preliminary trade data showing lower Korean exports for November weighed on sentiment. Foreign investors were net sellers, with USD/KRW rising 0.4% to 1,345.30. Among the steepest declines are shipbuilders Samsung Heavy Industries and Hyundai Heavy Industries.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index fell 2.7% to 17,514.34 in morning trade amid a rise in Covid-19 cases in China. Risk sentiment in Hong Kong and China faded towards the end of last week as investors sounded cautious amid rising coronavirus cases, lowering expectations that Beijing will back away from its zero-Covid measures, said Saxo Markets.

Chinese stocks fell in early trading as high cases of Covid-19 across the country raise the prospect of further mobility restrictions that could dampen economic activity. The PBOC kept benchmark lending rates unchanged this month, as was widely expected by the market. Consumer-related stocks were among the best-selling sectors, while real estate developers weakened. The Shanghai Composite Index fell 1.0% to 3065.07, the Shenzhen Composite Index fell 0.9% and the ChiNext Price Index fell 0.8%.


Most Asian currencies weakened against the USD on risk aversion sentiment fueled by losses in US stock futures and regional equity markets. The CNY is expected to remain volatile, albeit rangebound amid China’s surge in Covid-19 cases, analysts at MUFG Bank said. This development along with geopolitical concerns will affect Asian currency movements this week, analysts added. USD/CNY rose 0.7% to 7.1671 and USD/SGD gained 0.2% to 1.3769 while AUD/USD fell 0.2% to 0.6657 .

The MYR weakened against the USD and SGD at the start of Asian trading on fears of a hung parliament in Malaysia following a general election this weekend. Malaysia was entering uncharted territory after a hotly contested general election resulted in a hung parliament, the CGS-CIMB said. There is no clear winner and a surprising increase in support for the Islamist PAS party, he added. USD/MYR rose 0.4% to 4.5710; SGD/MYR was up 0.3% at 3.3220.


Gold was flat at the start of the Asian session, but could be weighed down by fears of a hawkish monetary policy from the Fed, analysts said. Several Fed officials continue to push back against the idea that they may soon be ready to pause the U.S. central bank’s tightening cycle, Oanda said. The path of least resistance for gold appears to be lower, Oanda added. Spot gold was little changed at $1,750.32/oz.


Crude oil falls during the Asian morning session amid concerns over Chinese demand. The near-term outlook for oil appears to have deteriorated, Tapas Strickland, head of market economics at NAB, said in a morning commentary, noting uncertainty surrounding Chinese demand given the surge in cases. of Covid-19. Analysts continue to cite low vaccination rates among the elderly as a major obstacle to reopening China, Strickland adds. First month WTI crude oil futures are 0.1% lower at $80.00/bbl; First-month Brent crude oil futures are down 1.0% at $86.73/barrel.

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(END) Dow Jones Newswire

November 20, 2022 10:15 p.m. ET (03:15 GMT)

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