Asia: Stocks shrug off global rally; US dollar falls

[TOKYO] Asian stocks consolidated at the open on Tuesday amid end-of-month portfolio adjustments. The US dollar extended losses.

Stocks fell in Japan, and rose in Australia and South Korea.

S&P 500 futures edged higher. Banks led the S&P 500 Index to its biggest gain in two weeks as investors found buying opportunities after the gauge fell to its lowest since July last week. HSBC Holdings added almost 9 per cent after its biggest shareholder raised its stake, while an index of lenders rose the most a month. Shares in Europe rose the most in three months. Treasuries were little changed.

As US fiscal stimulus talks are ongoing, traders are turning cautious ahead of the November election.

The markets also are awaiting the first US presidential debate on Tuesday as well as the employment report Friday to gauge how the world's biggest economy is transitioning through the Covid-19 pandemic.

"We definitely need another round of stimulus here, not only for confidence for the American public and workers, but also for the markets," Michelle Connell, owner and president of Portia Capital Management, said on Bloomberg Television.

"Going into this election, that would definitely help. I'd expect the markets to be weak, volatile, and have some downside here as we're waiting to find out who our next president is."

Here are some key events coming up:

- On Tuesday, the first US presidential debate will take place between President Donald Trump and Democratic opponent Joe Biden.

- China purchasing manager indices are due Wednesday, and expected to show September manufacturing improved slightly while non-manufacturing moderated from August's level.

- The EIA crude oil inventory report comes out Wednesday.

- The September US employment report on Friday will be the last before the November election.

These are the main moves in markets:


- S&P 500 futures rose 0.3 per cent as of 9.14am in Tokyo.

- The S&P 500 Index gained 1.6 per cent.

- Japan's Topix index fell 0.9 per cent.

- Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index gained 0.6 per cent.

- South Korea's Kospi index rose 0.9 per cent.

- Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index futures rose 0.6 per cent earlier.


- The yen traded at 105.45 per US dollar.

- The offshore yuan was at 6.8162 per US dollar.

- The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell 0.1 per cent.

- The euro traded at US$1.1679.

- The British pound gained 0.3 per cent to US$1.2876, extending a 0.7 per cent jump.


- The yield on 10-year Treasuries was steady at 0.65 per cent.

- Australia's 10-year bond yield rose one basis point to 0.78 per cent.


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