Many Asian markets trading lower

<p>Asian stocks were mostly lower with the MSCI Asia Pacific index down by around 0.5% at noon in Tokyo trading. The exception was the Australian […]</p>

Asian stocks were mostly lower with the MSCI Asia Pacific index down by around 0.5% at noon in Tokyo trading.

The exception was the Australian S&P/ASX200 index which was up by around 0.9% going into the final hour of trading. The Australian market has lagged the regional indices for a few months now so today’s movement and break above 4300 was seen as a much needed catch up.

The fact that the Australian dollar slipped against the US dollar possibly also lends some support to stocks which have been perceived as expensive due to the Australian dollar’s record rise over the past six months.

The Australian dollar was last buying 1.0425 against the US dollar. In other currencies, the Euro gained some ground against the dollar to last settle at 1.3329. The Japanese Yen booked most gains against the US dollar which last bought at 82.85.

Outside of Australia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 pared back last year’s losses, since the country’s record earthquake, as the declining Yen and $241bn of rebuilding commitments helped make it the best-performing benchmark index in the developed world this year.

The Bank of Japan today reiterated a pledge to continue monetary easing to bear deflationary pressures. A continuing improvement in global financial markets will continue pushing up corporate investment, said the central bank.

Meanwhile in regional debt news, Singapore is set to sell 30-year bonds for the first time today, extending the maturity of debt it will have on offer to the longest on record. The city-state will auction S$2.1bn of notes maturing in April 2042.


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