Fundamental analytics

Asian markets mixed; data and dollar in focus

Asian stock indexes traded mix on Monday as market participants continued to benefit from a weak US dollar while they await fresh economic reports later this week.

 

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 found support on energy-related stocks and automakers. Commodities were up earlier in the day on the back of a cheaper dollar.

 

The US dollar index, which measures the greenback against six major currencies, was trading 0.16 percent higher at 89.03 by the time of this writing.

 

The South Korean Kospi was lifted by rising technology equities, with Samsung Electronics adding more than half a percent after better-than-expected Q4 earnings.

 

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was also higher with gold remaining close to local highs as the American currency continues to slip across the board.

 

US stocks ended in green territory on Friday as the corporate earnings season continued to show good results. The Dow Jones industrial average was up 223.92 points to 26,616.71.

 

The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq composite added 1.2 percent and 1.3 percent to 2,872.87 and 7,505.77 points respectively. Both record-high levels.

 

On the data front, the US Commerce Department the economy expanded at a 2.6 percent growth rate in the fourth quarter of 2017, below an estimated 3 percent. Durable goods orders increased by 2.9 percent in December, comfortably above a 0.8 percent seen.

 

<<< Asian Stock Indexes at 07:40 GMT >>>

 

Australia ASX S&P                +22.90            +0.37%           6,187.60

Shanghai Composite             -35.13             -0.99%            3,523.00

Hong Kong Hang Seng          -97.69             -0.29%            33,056.43

Japan Nikkei 225                   -2.54               -0.01%            23,629.34

Taiwan TSEC 50 Index          +74.71            +0.67%           11,221.81

 

<<< Next in the United States >>>

 

Today, the PCE price index and personal spending data for December are due at 13:30 GMT.

 

The Federal Reserve will hold its latest monetary policy meeting under Janet Yellen’s leadership on Tuesday. The event will be closely watched by investors, although no changes are expected.

 

On Friday, traders will be monitoring the release of employment figures by the US Department of Labor. The state of the labor market plays an important role in the policy decision.

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