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Mixed Start Greets Asia Traders Ahead of Key Data: Markets Wrap

Adam Haigh
Visitors look at the trading floor at the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE), operated by Japan Exchange Group Inc. (JPX), in Tokyo, Japan. Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg

Asian equity traders were poised for a mixed start to Tuesday trading after U.S. stocks nudged lower and Treasuries climbed, with focus turning to a U.S. inflation report for clues on the pace of Federal Reserve policy tightening. The dollar and most commodities fell.

Futures on Japanese and Hong Kong equities were down, while Australian shares headed for a flat open. The S&P 500 Index slipped overnight following its biggest rally in five weeks that was spurred by a jobs report that reinforced the strength of global economic growth. The yen remained stronger as political clouds gathered around Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso.

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American inflation and retail sales data followed by reports on Chinese industrial production, retail sales and fixed-asset investment may provide direction and impetus for global equities that are recovering from losses sustained earlier this year. Markets are showing signs of settling down after U.S. President Donald Trump put traders on edge when he raised the prospect of a full-fledged trade war.

Elsewhere, crude oil slipped back below $62 a barrel. Emerging-market stocks surged. Iron ore prices tumbled into the $60s.

Terminal users can read more in our markets blog.

Here are some of the key things happening this week:

  • China data on industrial production, retail sales and fixed-asset investment all out on Wednesday are likely to point to slower growth, according to Bloomberg Economics forecasts.
  • Key indicators for the Fed dominate the economic agenda in the coming week. Headline inflation may have edged up to 2.2 percent in February from 2.1 percent, though consensus before Tuesday’s report is for core inflation to remain at 1.8 percent.
  • Prices and factory output are focal points in the euro area. Friday’s second inflation report for February may touch 1.2% from 1.1% the previous month.
  • Also this week, Germany’s Angela Merkel is inaugurated to a fourth term, EU27 government officials discuss the European Union’s Brexit position, and U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond issues his spring statement.

And these are the main moves in markets:


  • Futures on Japan’s Nikkei 225 Stock Average slid 0.6 percent in most recent Chicago trading.
  • Futures on Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index were little changed.
  • Futures on Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index lost 0.4 percent.
  • S&P 500 Index futures were little changed as of 7:03 a.m. in Tokyo. The underlying measure fell 0.1 percent.
  • The MSCI Emerging Market Index gained 1.2 percent to the highest in more than five weeks.


  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell 0.3 percent.
  • The euro increased less than 0.1 percent to $1.2336.
  • The pound gained 0.1 percent to $1.3907.
  • The yen was flat at 106.44 per dollar.


  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries declined one basis point to 2.87 percent.
  • Australia’s 10-year yield fell one basis point to 2.81 percent.


  • West Texas Intermediate crude decreased 1.1 percent to $61.36 a barrel.
  • Gold was little changed at $1,323.09 an ounce.
  • The Bloomberg Commodity Index declined 0.3 percent.

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