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Asian Markets End Mixed After Lackluster Session


Asian markets ended mixed on Monday after a highly lackluster session, as investors stayed wary of making significant moves due to worries about global economic growth.

The Chinese market, which resumed trading after Lunar New Year holidays, closed higher, while the Japanese market remained closed for a holiday for National Foundation Day.

Investors, reacting to corporate earnings results, looked ahead to the next round of trade negotiations between the U.S. and China, due to start this week in Beijing.

In Australia, benchmark S&P/ASX 200 ended down 0.18%, at 6,060.80. The broader All Ordinaries index settled at 6,128.60, losing about 0.12%.

Bendigo & Adelaide Bank tumbled 6.8% after reporting half-yearly cash earnings per share of 45.1 cents. That was down 0.4% from the prior corresponding period.

Spark Infrastructure Group shares declined 6.3% after the company gave an update on the Federal Court decision on tax treatment of certain cash contributions and gifted assets for Victoria Power Networks for the tax years 2008 to 2011.

News Corp. declined 5.7%, Bank of Queensland and Nufarm, both ended lower by about 4%.

Estia Health Limited shares gained 7.3%. Sigma Healthcare jumped 5.4% after the company announced a strong outlook. The company said it expects to deliver an underlying EBITDA of $55-$60 million for Financial Year 2020.

Alumina (up 4.9%), Nth Star (up 4.3%) and Super Retail Group (up 3.6%) were among the other major gainers in the session.

In the currency market, the Australian dollar was up by nearly 0.1%, at 0.7095 against the U.S. dollar.

In Shanghai, the Shanghai Composite Index ended up 1.36%, with investors lapping up some shares even as they awaited a new round of U.S.-China trade talks, set to begin in Beijing later in the week.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng closed higher by about 0.6% and Taiwan's benchmark ended up 0.72%.

The South Korean benchmark KOSPI ended with a modest 0.17% gain, bouncing back well after an early setback.

New Zealand ended modestly higher. In the Indian market, shares were extending losses from previous session. However, after plunging mor ethan 200 points, the Sensex regained some lost ground and was trading lower by about 110 points, or 0.3%, at 36,437.00. The Nifty50 was down 37.25 points, or 0.34%, at 10,906.35, after declining to a low of 10,857.10.

Singapore was heading to a marginally weak close, while Indonesia and Malaysia appeared set for a slightly higher finish.

Malaysia's Industrial Production Index rose 3.1% year-on-year in 2018, riding on improved performances by manufacturing and electricity sectors.

The report from Malaysian Statistics Department said the manufacturing sector grew 4.8% and electricity sector growth increased by 3.7%. The mining sector, however, declined by 1.9% for the year, the report said.

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