TOKYO (AP) – Asian stocks were mixed in a directionless trade on Tuesday after a US holiday, but optimism about a US debt deal faded on concerns for the regional economy.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 rose 0.3% to 31,328.16. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index fell 0.1% to 7,209.30. South Korea’s KOSPI rose 1.0% to 2,584.90.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose less than 0.1% to 18,553.22. The Shanghai Composite Stock Index fell less than 0.1% to 3,221.01.
Analysts say investors remain concerned about possible ‘second wave’ of coronavirus infections in China, but expect economic impact to be more limited than early pandemic wave says it does.
China’s recovery from virus-related turmoil over the past few years appears to have stalled, raising concerns for the region’s economy.
“It may be an understatement to say that China’s economic opening has been disappointing, especially as reflected in domestic stocks, which are currently on the brink of a bear market,” said Steven Innes of SPI Asset Management in a commentary. Stated.
Global stocks closed mostly higher on Monday after President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy reached a deal to raise the US debt ceiling. Now, Mr. Biden and Mr. McCarthy are trying to get the votes they need to get congressional approval in time to avoid a default.
In addition to the threat of US debt default, there are other concerns. A key inflation indicator tracked by the US Federal Reserve (Fed) beat economists’ expectations in April. Sustained inflationary pressure is complicating the Fed’s fight against high prices. The central bank has been raising interest rates aggressively since 2022, but recently signaled at a mid-June meeting that it was likely to hold off on rate hikes.
Markets will focus on US consumer confidence data due later in the day.
Elsewhere, US benchmark crude fell 25 cents to $72.42 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange electronically. Brent crude, the international standard crude, fell 44 cents to $76.63 a barrel.
The dollar rose from 140.38 yen to 140.44 yen. The euro fell from $1.0711 to $1.0700.
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