Asia-Pacific Market in Decline As Inflation Data is Awaited

The inflation statistics from the Japanese capital are widely regarded as a leading indicator of national trends within the country. (Credits: Richard A. Brooks)

On Monday, Asia-Pacific markets predominantly trended lower as investors remained attentive to inflation data emanating from the region.

Both Singapore and Malaysia showed inflation reports that surpassed expectations on Monday, contributing to market sentiment.

Looking ahead, Australia is poised to release its February consumer price index on Wednesday, while Tokyo is scheduled to announce its inflation figures on Friday.

In the final hour of trading, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index hovered marginally above the flatline, while mainland China’s CSI 300 index concluded the day 0.54% lower at 3,525.76, marking its third consecutive day of declines.

Shanghai Skyscrapers (Credits: VCG)

Japan’s Nikkei 225 witnessed a decline of 1.16%, closing at 40,414.12, retracting from its recent all-time high recorded on Friday. Similarly, the broad-based Topix index dipped by 1.26% to 2,777.64.

South Korea’s Kospi index experienced a slight downturn of 0.4% to settle at 2,737.57, despite an initial upward trend that brought it near two-year highs. Conversely, the small-cap Kosdaq index advanced by 1.07%, closing at 913.69.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 index gained 0.53%, concluding at 7,811.9, rebounding from losses incurred on Friday and inching closer to record highs. The S&P 500 also experienced a minor decline of 0.14%.

In the U.S. on Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average retreated by over 300 points, equivalent to 0.77%, following consecutive sessions of setting all-time records. (Credits: Dow Jones Industrial Average)

In contrast, the Nasdaq Composite continued its upward trajectory, registering a gain of 0.16% to close at 16,428.82, achieving another record high.

Commenting on Friday’s market movements, Keith Lerner, co-chief investment officer at Truist, characterized it as a period of consolidation following a robust week.

He expressed optimism about the market’s trend, particularly noting the breakout to new highs and the prospect of a fifth consecutive month of gains.

Josh Linardos
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