Asian equity markets trade mixed heading into the mid-point of today’s session. The ASX 200 trades in minor positive territory on its return from a long-weekend since Australian markets were closed yesterday. The health care and tech sectors have supported the ASX 200, whilst Maverick Drilling is among the best performers in the index, after the Co. reported an increase in its production update. The Nikkei 225 fluctuated between gains and losses to close morning trade flat, with jittery trade evident ahead of today’s BoJ policy decision. The KOSPI trades with firm losses, pressured by a decline in Samsung Electronic shares after Co. estimates and targets were cut at Morgan Stanley. The Hang Seng trades in the red and is weighed heavily by basic materials sector, whilst the Shanghai Comp. remained closed for Dragon Boat Festival.
In the FX markets, Australasian currencies weakened with NZD/USD falling to near 0.7850 and AUD/USD briefly breaking below the 0.94 handle. The release of lower than expected Home Loans of 0.8% vs. Exp. 2.0% added further pressure on AUD/USD which momentarily dipped to its lowest level since September 2010 at 0.9382. There were also reports that Goldman Sachs cut their 12 month AUD/USD forecast to 0.85 from 0.90 and lowered their Australia 2013 GDP forecast to 2.0% from 2.4%, adding to the negative outlook for AUD. Elsewhere USD/JPY briefly touched the 99.00 level before retreating to the downside and traded relatively quiet ahead of today’s BoJ decision.
Looking forward, the BoJ decision is due to be released today, which has no scheduled release time, but is usually released anytime between 0330BST/2130CDT – 0530BST/2330CDT.
As of 0344BST:
ASX 200 (+0.16%), Nikkei 225 (-0.01%), Hang Seng (-0.97%), KOSPI (-0.96%)
10 Jun 2013 - 22:45 - - Source: Newswires
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