Asia: Mixed after upbeat US trade data

09-Jan-2014 Intellasia | Business Times | Reuters | AFP | Bloomberg | AP | 8:13 AM Print This Post

Asian markets ended mixed yesterday Wednesday January 8, but Tokyo surged in response to a weaker yen and a Wall Street rally sparked by stronger United States economic data.

Investors are also awaiting the release of minutes from the US Federal Reserve’s policy meeting to see if another cut in its stimulus could be on the cards, while closely watched jobs figures are due later in the week.

Tokyo rallied 1.94 per cent, or 307.08 points, to 16,121.45. Sydney was flat, edging down 1.0 point to end at 5,316.0. Seoul was also almost unchanged, dipping just 0.48 points to close at 1,958.96.

Shanghai lost 0.15 per cent to 2,044.34.

After a tentative start to 2014 US shares enjoyed a rally on Tuesday after the Commerce Department said the trade deficit shrank in November as exports hit a record high for a second straight month.

The deficit narrowed 12.9 per cent from October, the second month in a row of contraction, to US$34.3 billion, the smallest figure since September 2009. It was also much better than forecasts of US$40.4 billion.

HONGKONG: STOCKS finished 1.25 per cent higher yesterday, taking their lead from Wall Street on strong US trade data.
The Hang Seng Index rose 283.81 points to 22,996.59 on turnover of HK$75.98 billion.
“Investors remain quite cautious,” said Ben Kwong, chief operating officer of KGI Asia.
Internet giant Tencent rose 1.5 per cent to HK$501.50 while, HSBC Bank added 1.79 per cent to HK$85.40, CNOOC appreciated by 2.34 per cent to HK$13.98 and China Mobile added 0.51 per cent to HK$78.45.

SINGAPORE:  THE Straits Times Index (STI) ended 29.77 points, or 0.95 per cent higher to 3150.65, taking the year-to-date performance down by 0.45 per cent.
The FTSE ST Mid Cap Index rose 0.86 per cent while the FTSE ST Small Cap Index added 0.09 per cent.
Of the actives, DBS advanced 1.94 per cent, OCBC gained 0.10 per cent, Charisma Energy shed 2.35 per cent, SingTel rose 0.28 per cent and Yangzijiang grew by 3.42 per cent.
The outperforming sector, FTSE ST Real Estate Holdings added 1.20 per cent. Of its two biggest stocks, Hongkong Land Holdings rose 2.01 per cent and Capitaland gained 0.68 per cent Agencies.

KUALA LUMPUR: SHARES on Bursa Malaysia rebounded yesterday after losing 47 points in five days as investors took the cue from the strong gains in the regional and United States markets, dealers said.
The market closed on a firm note on technical rebound, especially consumer, trade and services stocks, which pushed the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) into positive territory throughout yesterday.
The benchmark FBM KLCI rose 6.19 points to 1,831.3 after opening 1.84 points higher at 1,826.95.
Dealers said local stock market moved in line with regional peers, which were spurred by the US market rebound.
On the scoreboard, the Finance Index fell 89.621 points to 16,721.02, the Plantation Index rose 26 points to 8,714.63 and the Industrial Index was 19.48 points higher at 3,104.48.
The FBM Emas Index rose 33.319 points to 12,678.3, FBMT100 Index surged 33.391 points to 12,387.32, the FBM ACE Index improved 149.84 points to 5,962.68 and the FBM 70 rose 4.5 points to 14,107.61.
Among actives, Iris Corp slipped 5.5 sen to 38 sen, Barakah Offshore added five sen to RM1.63 and Smartag Solutions gained 1.5 sen to 15 sen.
Meanwhile, FBM KLCI futures contracts on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives closed higher, in tandem with the cash market.
Spot month January 2014 rose four points to 1,832.5, while February 2014 and March 2014 added five points each to 1,833 and 1,832, respectively. June 2014 gained 7.5 points to 1,828.5.
Turnover amounted to 7,066 lots, down from Tuesday’s 8,026 lots, while open interest decreased to 7,066 contracts from 8,026 contracts.

In other markets:

* Taipei rose 0.51 per cent, or 43.71 points, to 8,556.01. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co added 1.96 per cent to T$104.0 while Hon Hai Precision was 0.63 per cent higher at T$79.5.

* Wellington added 0.42 per cent, or 20.18 points, to 4,779.80.

* Manila closed 0.66 per cent higher, adding 39.04 points to 5,986.48. BDO Unibank rose 0.97 per cent to 72.55 pesos, Philippine Long Distance Telephone added 1.52 per cent to 2,668 pesos and SM Prime Holdings appreciated by 1.94 per cent to close at 14.68 pesos.

* Jakarta closed higher 0.59 per cent, or 24.79 points, at 4,200.59. Palm oil producer Astra Agro Lestari rose 6.05 per cent to 22,800 rupiah, while Indofood Sukses Makmur gained 1.13 per cent to 6,700 rupiah.

* Bangkok fell 0.37 per cent or 4.63 points to 1,257.73. Airports of Thailand dropped 4.29 per cent to 145.00 baht, while telecoms company True Corporation fell 4.23 per cent to 6.80 baht.

* Mumbai rose for the first time this year, edging up 0.17 per cent to 20,729.38.

VIETNAM: Vietnamese stocks extended gain today with support from securities stocks and blue chips as investors eyed earnings results.
The benchmark VN Index added 3.78 points or 0.74% to 513.9. Volume fell 5.5% to 70.3 million worth of VND1.083 trillion.Put-through trading contributed 1.67 million shares worth of VND65.72 billion.
The market breadth was positive with 126 gainers, 76 losers and 83 unchanged.
The VN30 gained 4.96 points or 0.87% to 573.11. Among 30 constituents, 20 gained, 7 fell, 3 stood still.
Market opened in the green with 1.2 million shares changed hands. Market extended gaining as it progressed as buying into blue chips inspired the broader market. The buying into securities stocks were increasingly persuasive and inspired buying of other stocks. Market closed near the high of the day with support of majority of blue chips.
The most notable trading today came from Saigon Securities Inc. (SSI), with steady buying energy from the morning session, then livened up in the afternoon, buyers were more and more aggressive and the share price closed at the high of the day with 6.9 million shares changed hands.
Other securities shares also got a boost, BSI limited up second day, HCM, AGR gained.
A series of blue chips also gained, giving support to the market, BMC, DPM, FPT, GMD, HPG, HSG, KDC, PPC, REE were all gainers. PVD limited up.
Top 5 large caps, which accounted for roughly 50% of market capitalization were mostly gainers, GAS, MSN, VCB, VNM gained only VIC lost.
Banking shares were fading after a strong performance yesterday, VCB, STB gained, while CTG, MBB, EIB lost.
High beta stocks were mixed, FLC, ITA, VNE fell, while VIP, VHG, MCG, KMR, PXS gained.
On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX gained 0.52 point or 0.75% to 69.99. Trading volume rose 30% to 56.2 million shares worth VND454.6 billion.
The breadth was positive with 136 gainers, 61 losers, 71 unchanged and the rest untraded.
The HNX30 gained 1.38 points or 1.05% to 132.87.

EUROPE: European stock markets fell yesterday, with investors booking profits ahead of an update from the United States Federal Reserve and in reaction to eurozone unemployment data.
London’s FTSE 100 index of top companies slid 0.38 per cent to 6,729.92 points, Frankfurt’s DAX 30 index lost 0.15 per cent to 9,492.29 points and Paris’ CAC 40 dipped 0.08 per cent to 4,259.24 in midday deals compared with Tuesday’s closing values.
“Traders are playing it safe as they await the update from the Fed,” said David Madden, market analyst at IG traders.
In the eurozone, unemployment continued near record highs in November at 12.1 per cent but there were signs the bad times may be easing as the debt crisis peaks out, analysts said yesterday.
Meanwhile, the FTSEurofirst 300 shed 0.2 per cent to 1,317.71 points at 1133GMT.

AMERICA: The stock market stumbled Wednesday as investors waited for the government’s jobs report later this week and the beginning of quarterly earnings releases from corporate America.

Traders put aside a positive report that showed private employers created more jobs in December than economists had expected. The market had a muted reaction to the minutes from the Federal Reserve’s mid-December policy meeting.

Wednesday’s declines extend what has been a muddled start to 2014. Both the Dow Jones industrial average and the Standard & Poor’s 500 index are down a little less than 1 percent after five days of trading.

The tough start should be taken in context of last year’s exceptional performance, when the S&P 500 surged almost 30 percent.

After bidding up companies’ stock prices to record levels last year, investors are ready to see if their bets are going to pay off. Big, publicly traded U.S. companies will start reporting their quarterly financial results Thursday.

“The question is whether this strengthening economy is translating into stronger corporate earnings,” said Russ Koesterich, global chief investment strategist at the investment firm BlackRock.

Dow member and oil giant Chevron will report after the closing bell Thursday, as well as former Dow member and aluminum company Alcoa. Next week investors will have results from Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, General Electric and American Express.

“Earnings will determine what’s next for the stock market,” said Lawrence Creatura, a portfolio manager with Federated Investors.

Another theme on investors’ agendas is jobs.

A private survey released Wednesday showed U.S. businesses added the most jobs in a year in December, powered by a big gain in construction work. Payroll processor ADP said companies added 238,000 jobs in December, better than the 200,000 economists predicted.

The ADP data sets the stage for Friday’s government jobs report. Investors expect the U.S. economy created 190,000 jobs last month and the unemployment rate remained steady at 7 percent.

The Dow lost 68.20 points, or 0.4 percent, to 16,462.74. The losses erased more than half of the 105-point gain the index had on Tuesday.

The S&P 500 fell 0.39 points, or less than 0.1 percent, to 1,837.49 and the Nasdaq composite rose 12.43 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,165.61.

S&P Capital IQ’s Alec Young said he expects the stock market will “churn” at these levels into next week, once investors have earnings and Friday’s jobs report to analyze.

In company news:

Ford rose 16 cents, or 1 percent, to $15.54 after CEO Alan Mulally said he would not leave to run Microsoft. Mulally was considered a top candidate for the position, having led the turnaround for Ford turning the financial crisis.

Forest Labs jumped $10.54, or 18 percent, to $69.30 after the company said it would buy Aptalis, which specializes in treatments for gastrointestinal problems and cystic fibrosis, for $2.9 billion in cash.

Macy’s jumped in after-hours trading after the company said late Wednesday that it would lay off 2,500 workers as it restructures its business. The stock rose $3.21, or 6 percent, to $55.05.

Benchmark Currency Rates



1.3572 0.0095 1.6451 1.0966 0.9239 0.8912 0.1290


0.7368 0.0070 1.2121 0.8080 0.6807 0.6566 0.0950


104.8200 142.2600 172.4300 114.9490 96.8260 93.3970 13.5179


0.6079 0.8250 0.0058 0.6667 0.5616 0.5417 0.0784


0.9119 1.2377 0.0087 1.4999 0.8424 0.8128 0.1176


1.0824 1.4692 0.0103 1.7807 1.1871 0.9643 0.1396


1.1222 1.5231 0.0107 1.8461 1.2311 1.0370 0.1448


7.7544 10.5239 0.0740 12.7555 8.5036 7.1631 6.9074

Source: Bloomberg


Category: FinanceAsia

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