asia

Asian markets mixed after China warning on risks, stagflation – MarketWatch


Stocks were mixed in Asia on Monday after ending the week mostly lower on Wall Street, despite the Nasdaq’s first close above 16,000.

The Shanghai Composite index
SHCOMP,
+0.61%

gained 0.7%, while the Hang Seng
HSI,
-0.39%

in Hong Kong lost 0.4%.

Tokyo’s Nikkei 225
NIK,
+0.09%

edged 0.1% higher while South Korea’s Kospi
180721,
+1.42%

rose 1.2%. In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200
XJO,
-0.59%

gave up 0.5%. Stocks slipped in Indonesia
JAKIDX,
+0.05%

but gained in Singapore
STI,
+0.15%

and Taiwan
Y9999,
-0.08%
.

A resurgence of coronavirus outbreaks in the U.S., Europe and some other regions is weighing on investor sentiment. Comments by advisers to the Chinese central bank about risks of “stagflation,” meanwhile, have reinforced concerns about inflationary pressures.

Attention has turned to the People’s Bank of China as Beijing strives to curb risks from excessive borrowing by property developers but still keep the economy growing.

An adviser to the PBOC, Liu Shijin, told a conference over the weekend that China needed to avoid “quasi-stagflation,” Bloomberg reported.

Another economist, Jia Kang, echoed that sentiment, saying that if the pace of economic growth is slower than the inflation rate, “then how can we formulate a prescription for macro-control?”

Ting Lu of Nomura noted that controls on property lending, fresh waves of COVID-19 outbreaks and strict policies to fight them and surging prices are all adding to China’s policy challenges.

“A raft of meeting memos and policy reports show that Beijing is becoming increasingly concerned about the growth slump and has begun to take action to shift its policy stance in order to prevent growth from sliding further,” Ting said in a report.

On Friday, the S&P 500 index
SPX,
+0.49%

gave up 0.1% to 4,697.96 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average
DJIA,
+0.36%

fell 0.8% to 35,601.98. The Nasdaq
COMP,
+0.52%

added 0.4% to 16,057.44, for its sixth straight gain.

Despite an up-and-down week, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq notched weekly gains, while the Dow posted its second straight weekly loss.

Some 66% of companies in the S&P 500 fell, with financial and energy stocks accounting for a big share of the pullback. Those losses outweighed gains in technology and a mix of companies that rely on consumer spending.

In other trading, U.S. benchmark crude oil
CLF22,
-0.84%

picked up 3 cents to $75.97 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude
BRNF22,
-0.80%
,
the basis for international pricing, lost 5 cents to $78.84 per barrel.

The U.S. dollar
USDJPY,
+0.58%

rose to 114.15 Japanese yen from 113.96 yen on Friday.



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