Stock Groups

Asia-Pacific markets mixed; Evergrande shares in Hong Kong drop 5%


SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific were mixed in Friday morning trade, with stocks in Hong Kong continuing to see further losses.

The benchmark Hang Seng index in Hong Kong slipped 0.93%, adding to losses seen earlier in the week. The index dropped almost 6% by Thursday’s close due to regulatory worries in the technology and casino sectors.

Shares of China Evergrande Group dropped around 5% as fears over its debt problems continue to weigh on investor sentiment.

Mainland Chinese stocks were relatively muted, with the Shanghai composite little changed while the Shenzhen component declined 0.107%.

Elsewhere, the Nikkei 225 in Japan climbed 0.34% while the Topix index traded 0.13% higher. South Korea’s Kospi slipped 0.38%.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 fell 1.03%.

The MSCI’s largest index of Asia-Pacific shares, which is not based in Japan, traded 0.54 percent lower.

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Overnight stateside, the Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 63.07 points to 34,751.32 while the S&P 500 dipped around 0.16% to 4,473.75. The Nasdaq Composite gained 0.13% to 15,181.92.

The moves on Wall Street came after the Census Bureau reported Thursday that August’s retail sales increased 0.7% for the month against the Dow Jones estimate of a decline of 0.8%. However, the initial July estimate was revised to show a decrease of almost 2%, compared with a 0.5% month-over-month increase.

Meanwhile, the latest unemployment insurance weekly data showed 332,000 first-time jobless claims last week, higher than the Dow Jones estimate of 320,000.

Currencies and oil

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers was at 92.881 following a recent jump from below 92.6.

The Japanese yen traded at 109.78 per dollar, stronger than levels above 110 seen against the greenback earlier this week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7288, struggling to recover after slipping from above $0.735 earlier in the week.

Oil prices were lower in the morning of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures falling 0.21% to $75.51 per barrel. U.S. crude futures Oil prices fell by 0.22%, to $72.45 per barrel.