Asian stock markets are trading mixed on Monday, following the negative cues from Wall Street on Friday, as weak crude oil prices and worries about the global economy due to resurgence of coronavirus cases and fresh lockdown measures in Europe weighed on market sentiment. Asian markets closed mixed on Friday.
The Australian stock market is modestly lower on Monday, giving up some of the gains in the previous two sessions, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 below the 7,400 level, following the mostly negative cues from Wall Street on Friday, with weakness in energy, gold mining and travel stocks. The potential of more European countries reinstating full lockdowns is sparking worries the pandemic could once again weigh down the global economy.
Meanwhile, the domestic coronavirus situation is also still grim, particularly in Victoria, even as the lockdowns and restrictions have been lifted. Victoria recorded 1,029 new locally acquired cases and three deaths on Sunday, with the total active cases of COVID-19 across Victoria falling to 9,533. NSW reported only 180 new locally acquired cases and one death.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is losing 33.70 points or 0.46 percent to 7,362.80, after hitting a low of 7,337.00 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is down 30.40 points or 0.39 percent to 7,699.50. Australian stocks closed slightly higher on Friday.
Among the major miners, Rio Tinto is gaining almost 1 percent, Mineral Resources is adding more than 1 percent and Fortescue Metals is rising almost 2 percent, while OZ Minerals and BHP Group are edging down 0.3 percent each.
Oil stocks are lower, with Woodside Petroleum losing almost 3 percent, Origin Energy down more than 1 percent, Beach energy declining almost 4 percent, Oil Search sliding 2.5 percent and Santos slipping more than 2 percent.
Among tech stocks, WiseTech Global and Xero are losing almost 1 percent each, while Appen is gaining more than 1 percent. Afterpay is declining 1.5 percent.
Gold miners are lower. Evolution Mining, Resolute Mining, Newcrest Mining and Northern Star Resources are losing more than 2 percent each, while Gold Road Resources is declining almost 2 percent.
Among the big four banks, Commonwealth Bank, Westpac and ANZ Banking are losing almost 2 percent each, while National Australia Bank is down more than 1 percent.
Among travel stocks, Flight Centre is losing almost 5 percent, Webjet is declining more than 3 percent and Qantas is slipping almost 3 percent.
In the currency market, the Aussie dollar is trading at $0.724 on Monday.
The Japanese stock market is modestly lower on Monday, giving up the gains in the previous session, with the Nikkei 225 falling below the 29,700 level, following the mostly negative cues from Wall Street on Friday, on renewed COVID-19 concerns is Europe and some other countries that is sparking worries about the pace of the global economic recovery, even as Japan unveiled a record 56 trillion yen, or $490 billion stimulus package.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index closed the morning session at 29,677.95, down 67.92 points or 0.23 percent, after hitting a low of 29,542.29 earlier. Japanese shares ended modestly higher on Friday.
Market heavyweight SoftBank Group is flat, while Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing is losing almost 1 percent. Among automakers, Honda and Toyota are losing more than 1 percent each.
In the tech space, Advantest is gaining almost 1 percent, while Screen Holdings and Tokyo Electron are edging down 0.3 percent each. In the banking sector, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial is losing more than 1 percent, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is declining 1.5 percent and Mizuho Financial is edging down 0.2 percent.
The major exporters are lower, with Panasonic and Sony losing almost 1 percent each, while Mitsubishi Electric declining almost 2 percent and Canon is down more than 1 percent.
Among the other major losers, Inpex is losing 5.5 percent, while Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Yokohama Rubber are declining more than 3 percent each. Nissan Motor, Nexon, NSK, IHI and Ricoh are slipping almost 3 percent each.
Conversely, Japan Steel Works is gaining almost 3 percent.
In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the lower 114 yen-range on Monday.
Elsewhere in Asia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, and Indonesia are lower by between 0.1 and 0.9 percent each. South Korea is gaining 1.2 percent, while China and Singapore are up 0.3 and 0.5 percent, respectively. Taiwan and Malaysia are relatively flat.
On Wall Street, stocks once again moved in opposite directions during trading on Friday following the mixed performance seen in the previous session. While the tech-heavy Nasdaq reached a new record closing high, the Dow moved lower for the third straight session.
The Nasdaq climbed 63.73 points or 0.4 percent to 16,057.44, but the Dow slid 268.97 points or 0.8 percent to 35,601.98. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 spent the day bouncing back and forth across the unchanged line before closing down 6.58 points or 0.1 percent at 4,697.96.
Meanwhile, the major European markets moved to the downside on the day. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index slid by 0.5 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index both fell by 0.4 percent.
Crude oil prices plunged sharply on Friday amid rising concerns about the outlook for energy demand following a surge in COVID-19 cases and fresh restrictions in some European countries. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for December settled at $75.94 a barrel, losing $2.47 or 3.2 percent.
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