Asian Stocks

Asian Stocks Lower On Rising Tensions Between USA and China

Asian markets are trading mostly on negative foot the last trading day of the week as investors await a press conference by President Donald Trump on China and the developments in Hong Kong. China’s Foreign Ministry warned that it would retaliate against any sanctions imposed.

Sanctions against China

China is planning to impose a new stricter security law in Hong Kong. The move might spark a new round of protests and a stand-off. Hong Kong officials in a move to calm investors said that the new law would not alter the civil liberties. The House of Representatives passed legislation for sanctions against Chinese officials for the detention of Uighur Muslims. 

The sanctions might range from cancelling the Phase 2 trade deal, new tariffs on Chinese products to travel and financial restrictions on Chinese officials. 

In Wall Street, the major indices after a strong start slide to negative territory as the economic data continue to disappoint. The U.S. Initial Jobless Claims came in at 2123K above the expectations of 2100K in May as the layoff in the USA continues. The four-week moving average was 2,608,000, a decrease of 436,000 from the previous week’s average. The U.S. jobless claims have surpassed 40 million since the lockdown. 

Bank of England member Michael Saunders said the central bank (BOE) should expand its asset purchase program to offset the impact on the economy from the coronavirus crisis

Nikkei 225 index finished 0.18% lower at 21,877. The Hang Seng index trades lower for one more day and as of writing gives up 0.60% at 22,991, while the Shanghai Composite index is 0.11% higher at 2,849. In Singapore, the FTSE Straits Times Index is 0.19% lower at 2,510.

European stocks started sharply lower on Monday morning; the German DAX is 3.46% lower at 10,484. CAC 40 index is 3.98% lower at 4,390, while the FTSE MIB in Milan is 3.10% lower at 17,141. In London, the FTSE 100 is 0.19% lower at 5,751.  

In commodities markets, the crude oil rebound stalled at two-month highs. Brent crude oil traded 0.69% higher at $35.53 per barrel, while the WTI crude oil futures contract for July delivery is 2.02% lower at 33.01. The gold price traded slightly higher as the tension between China and the USA escalates, as of writing is 0.06% higher at 1,719. The gold first resistance stands at $1,765 the high from May 18, while the first support stands at $1,700 round figure. Silver price is 0.02% higher at $17.36. 

Cryptocurrencies trade lower after the two days rally, Bitcoin (BTCUSD) price is 0.53% lower at $9,526, hitting the daily low at $9,405 and the daily high at $9,615. Bitcoin’s (BTCUSD) technical picture is bullish, as the price holds above the 200 and 100-day moving average, while a credible close above the 10,000 mark would attract more bids. The first support for Bitcoin is seen at the $9,000 psychological mark. On the other side, initial resistance stands at $10,065, the high from May 8.

Ethereum is 0.26% higher, at $221.15. The initial resistance for Ethereum stands at 224.90, the daily high, while the first support stands at $204.92, the low from yesterday’s trading session. Ripple is 0.28% lower at 0.1997. Litecoin (LTCUSD) is 0.04% higher at 44.74.

 In the Lookout: The Japan Industrial Production came in at -9.1%, below the expectations of -5.1% in April, the yearly reading for the Industrial Production came in at -14.4%, below the forecasts of -7.9%. 

Consumer Confidence Index in Japan registered in at 24 topping the forecasts of 12.8 in May. The Japan Housing Starts came in at -12.9% below the expectations of -12.1% in April. The Annualized Housing Starts came down to 0.797M in April from the previous 0.905M, while the Japan Construction Orders came in at -14.2% in April from the previous -14.3%. 

Trading Perspective: In the forex markets, EURUSD managed to break above the 1.11 mark. USDCHF is 0.13% lower at 0.9628. GBPUSD is 0.23% higher at 1.2347; the AUDUSD is 0.35% higher at 0.6657. The U.S. dollar is also weaker against the Yen; the USDJPY is 0.43% lower at 107.13. 

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