Stock moves, currencies, China inflation data


Reflections of pedestrians on an electronics stock indicator at the window of a securities company in Tokyo, Japan.

Toshifumi Kitamura | AFP | Getty Images

SINGAPORE — Asia-Pacific markets came under pressure on Tuesday, following a sell-off in tech stocks that weighed down major U.S. indexes overnight.

Stocks in Taiwan led declines across the region, with the benchmark Taiex down over 4% in afternoon trade.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 shed around 3% while the Topix moved 2.4% lower. South Korea’s Kospi fell around 1.5%.

In Australia, the ASX 200 inched down 1.1% ahead of the government’s budget announcement on Tuesday evening.

Greater China markets also traded lower. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell nearly 2%, while stocks in Shanghai and Shenzhen were down by 0.3% and 0.2%, respectively.

Chinese tech stocks were among the biggest losers in the region. In Hong Kong, shares of food delivery giant Meituan plunged nearly 6% as authorities in Beijing continued clamping down on internet firms, while tech giant Tencent fell 2.4%.

China said Tuesday consumer prices in April jumped 0.9% from a year ago, slightly missing the 1% forecast by analysts in a Reuters poll. However, the producer price index rose 6.8%, beating the 6.5% projected by analysts polled by Reuters.

In addition to inflation data, China released results from its once-a-decade census that showed population growth on the mainland slowing to 0.53% over the past 10 years — down from 0.57% between 2000 and 2010.

Elsewhere in the region, Southeast Asian countries Malaysia and the Philippines released first-quarter gross domestic product data.

Malaysia’s economy contracted by 0.5% in the January-to-March quarter compared with a year ago, less than the 2% contraction expected by analysts in a Reuters poll. Meanwhile, the Philippine economy shrank 4.2% on-year, more than the 3% contraction forecast by analysts in a Reuters poll.

Stocks in Malaysia and the Philippines were down by 0.6% and 0.3%, respectively.

Currencies and oil

In the foreign exchange market, the U.S. dollar strengthened 0.03% to 90.237 against a basket of its peers in early Asia trade.

Major Asia-Pacific currencies mostly weakened against the U.S. dollar on Tuesday.

The Japanese yen changed hands at 108.84 per dollar, while the Korean won traded at 1,119.21 per dollar.

Meanwhile, the Australian dollar was roughly flat against the greenback at $0.7831.

Oil markets fell. U.S. crude futures dropped 0.74% to $64.44 per barrel, while global benchmark Brent was down 0.94% to $67.68 per barrel.

CNBC’s Thomas Franck contributed to this report.



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