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Asia Stocks Head for Mixed Start; Dollar Slides: Markets Wrap

Adam Haigh
Pedestrians are reflected in an electronic stock board outside a securities firm in Tokyo, Japan, on Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018. Japan’s blue-chip Nikkei 225 Stock Average entered a correction as the nation’s shares posted the biggest decline since November 2016, following U.S. peers lower amid rising concern that inflation will force interest rates higher. Photographer: Noriko Hayashi/Bloomberg

Asian stocks were set for a mixed start to Tuesday trading as investors assessed early indications from America’s corporate earnings season and traders awaited a slew of data on China’s economy. The dollar fell against most peers.

Futures signaled a muted open for equity markets in Japan and Australia, while Hong Kong stocks pointed higher. The S&P 500 Index gained to the highest in almost a month and erased its loss for the year as investors turned their focus to the earnings season after there was no immediate reprisal to the U.S.-led missile strike in Syria and trade concerns took a back seat. Treasury yields steadied and West Texas crude futures dropped below $67 a barrel.

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While geopolitical concerns linger, investor focus this week is back on corporate earnings and a slew of Federal Reserve officials who are due to speak, including the incoming head of the New York Fed, John Williams. Traders are also watching China, where later Tuesday data on economic growth in addition to retail sales and industrial production are released.

Terminal users can read more in our markets live blog.

Here’s what to watch out for this week:

  • Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley among companies reporting results
  • John Williams, soon to be president of the New York Fed, speaks on economic outlook in Madrid on Tuesday.
  • China GDP and Japanese inflation are the featured data points in Asia.
  • Trump welcomes Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to Mar-a-Lago on Tuesday. North Korea and trade will probably be discussed.
  • Mining investors will get to take the pulse of the global industry this week, with Vale, Rio Tinto and BHP offering quarterly production reports.

Here are the main moves in markets:


  • Futures on Japan’s Nikkei 225 Stock Average traded in line with where they were at the cash market close in Tokyo on Monday.
  • Futures on Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index were flat.
  • Futures on Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 0.6 percent.
  • The S&P 500 Index gained 0.8 percent.


  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index declined 0.3 percent to the lowest in three weeks.
  • The euro was flat at $1.2380.
  • The pound was at $1.4338, hitting the strongest in about 22 months and close to its post-Brexit high.
  • The yen was at 107.14 per dollar after gaining 0.2 percent Monday.


  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries was little changed at 2.83 percent.


  • Gold was steady at $1,345.85 an ounce.
  • West Texas Intermediate crude dipped 1.7 percent to $66.22 a barrel, the first retreat in more than a week.
  • LME aluminum gained 5 percent to $2,399.00 per metric ton, the highest in more than six years.

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