Asian Shares Slide After U.S. Jobs Data

asianmarket 021219 08nov21 lt

Asian stocks ended mostly lower on Monday as better than expected employment data from the U.S. forced investors to reset rate hike expectations.

Chinese stocks ended a tad higher after exports data for October beat forecasts despite global supply chain disruptions.

Exports rose 27.1 percent in dollar terms last month from a year earlier, official data showed Sunday. That marked the 13th straight month of double-digit growth and exceeded economists' expectations of a 22.8 percent gain. Imports increased 20.6 percent, leaving a trade surplus of $84.54 billion.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index inched up 7.06 points, or 0.2 percent, to 3,498.63, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index ended down 106.74 points, or 0.4 percent, at 24,763.77.

Japanese shares ended in the red despite the new government unveiling a spending plan to revive the economy from the coronavirus pandemic.

The Nikkei 225 Index slipped 104.52 points, or 0.4 percent, to finish at 29,507.05 as investors looked ahead to a slew of quarterly earnings results due this week. The broader Topix ended 0.3 percent lower at 2,035.22.

SoftBank Group ended 0.8 percent lower ahead of its earnings release later in the day. Nissan Motor edged up slightly ahead of its earnings results due on Tuesday, while Tokyo Electron, which unveils its results on Friday, advanced 1.3 percent.

Internet firm Mixi slumped 18.2 percent and robot maker Daifuku plunged 7.7 percent on disappointing earnings news. Precision machine maker Olympus soared 6 percent on robust earnings.

Australian markets ended marginally lower, dragged down by healthcare and tech stocks. Healthcare stocks succumbed to profit taking after gaining sharply last week.

Resmed lost 2.3 percent and Polynovo slumped as much as 9.7 percent. In the tech sector, Xero tumbled 4.9 percent.

Mining giant BHP rose 0.8 percent after it signed a deal to sell its stake in metallurgical coal unit to Stanmore Resources. Sydney Airport shares surged 2.8 percent.

Energy stocks such as Woodside Petroleum and Santos climbed about 3 percent each as oil advanced above $82 a barrel on the back of positive signs for global growth.

Seoul stocks fell for a second straight session, with financial, bio and tech stocks leading losses. The Kospi slipped 9.07 points, or 0.3 percent, to settle at 2,960.20 amid foreign and institutional selling.

New Zealand shares ended a tad lower, with the benchmark NZX-50 Index closing down 33.31 points, or 0.3 percent, at 13,041.30, following Friday's 1 percent gain.

Heavyweights Mainfreight, A2 Milk and Fisher & Paykel Healthcare lost 2-3 percent while Auckland International Airport advanced 1.4 percent after Sydney Airport agreed to a takeover offer.

U.S. stocks pushed further into record highs on Friday as the latest jobs data surprised on the upside.

U.S. non-farm payroll employment surged up by 531,000 jobs in October, while the unemployment rate fell to 4.6 percent from 4.8 percent in September, hitting its lowest level since March of 2020, data showed.

The Dow gained 0.6 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite edged up 0.2 percent and the S&P 500 added 0.4 percent.

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