Asian Markets Trade Mostly Higher

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Asian stock markets are trading mostly higher on Tuesday, following the mostly positive cues from Wall Street overnight, as investors largely stayed cautious ahead of some key earnings updates, US GDP data and the US Federal Reserve's monetary policy announcement on Wednesday. News of new Covid-19 cases in China dropping to the lowest level in more than a week aided market sentiment. Asian markets closed mostly lower on Monday.

CME Group's FedWatch tool is currently indicating a 77.5 percent chance of a 75-basis point interest rate hike by the Fed and a 22.5 percent chance of a 100-basis point rate hike.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Sunday that the US economy is slowing, but healthy hiring shows it isn't yet in recession.

The Australian stock market is marginally higher on Tuesday, recouping some of the losses in the previous two sessions, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 staying below the 6,800 level, following the mostly positive cues from Wall Street overnight, boosted largely by energy and resource stocks amid higher commodity prices, nearly offset by weakness in gold miners and technology stocks.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is gaining 6.90 points or 0.10 percent to 6,796.80, after touching a high of 6,808.60 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is up 7.80 points or 0.11 percent to 7,014.20. Australian stocks closed slightly lower on Monday.

Among the major miners, Rio Tinto, BHP Group and Fortescue Metals are gaining more than 1 percent each, while Mineral Resources is adding almost 3 percent. OZ Minerals is edging down 0.5 percent.

Oil stocks are higher, with Beach energy gaining more than 2 percent and Woodside Energy up more than 1 percent, while Santos and Origin Energy are adding almost 2 percent each.

Among tech stocks, Afterpay owner Block is losing more than 4 percent, WiseTech Global is edging down 0.5 percent and Xero is declining more than 2 percent, while Appen is gaining more than 1 percent. Zip is rebounding and is skyrocketing more than 20 percent.

Gold miners are lower. Newcrest Mining and Resolute Mining are losing almost 3 percent each, while Evolution Mining, Northern Star Resources and Gold Road Resources are down almost 1 percent each.

Among the big four banks, Commonwealth Bank is edging down 0.3 percent, while ANZ Banking and Westpac are gaining more than 1 percent each. National Australia Bank is edging up 0.5 percent.

In the currency market, the Aussie dollar is trading at $0.698 on Tuesday.

The Japanese stock market is slightly lower on Tuesday, extending the losses in the previous session, with the Nikkei 225 staying below the 27,700 level, following the mixed cues from Wall Street overnight, with traders booking profits after the recent winning streak ahead to the US Federal Reserve's monetary policy decision on Wednesday. Japan also confirmed its first monkeypox case.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index closed the morning session at 27,681.73, down 17.52 points or 0.06 percent, after hitting a low of 27,538.39 earlier. Japanese shares ended significantly lower on Monday.

Market heavyweight SoftBank Group is gaining almost 3 percent , while Uniqlo operator Fast Retailing is declining almost 1 percent. Among automakers, Honda is edging up 0.3 percent and Toyota is flat.

In the tech space, Advantest is edging up 0.1 percent, while Tokyo Electron and Screen Holdings are edging down 0.4 percent each. In the banking sector, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is gaining almost 1 percent, while Mizuho Financial and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial are edging up 0.4 percent each.

The major exporters are mixed, with Sony and Mitsubishi Electric edging up 0.5 percent each, while Canon is losing more than 1 percent and Panasonic is down almost 1 percent.

Among the other major losers, Omron is losing almost 3 percent.

Conversely, JGC Holdings is gaining almost 4 percent and Inpex is adding more than 3 percent, while Idemitsu Kosan and Hitachi Construction Machinery are up almost 3 percent each.

In economic news, members of the Bank of Japan's Monetary Policy Board agreed that the country's economy has picked up in recent months, minutes from the central bank's meeting on June 16 and 17 revealed on Tuesday. The bank noted that inflation has stabilized around 2 percent, the minutes showed - mainly due to increases in food and energy prices.

At the meeting, the central bank left the policy rate unchanged at -0.10 percent as expected and reaffirmed that it will purchase a necessary amount of Japanese government bonds (JGBs) without setting an upper limit so that 10-year JGB yields will remain at around zero percent.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the lower 136 yen-range on Tuesday.

Elsewhere in Asia, Hong Kong is up 1.3 percent, while China, Singapore, South Korea and Indonesia are higher by between 0.1 and 0.7 percent each. New Zealand, Malaysia and Taiwan are lower by between 0.5 and 0.9 percent each.

On Wall Street, stocks ended on a mixed note on Monday after a choppy session as investors largely stayed cautious, looking ahead to some key earnings updates, the GDP data and the Federal Reserve's monetary policy announcement.

The major averages ended mixed. The Dow ended with a gain of 90.75 points or 0.28 percent at 31,990.04, and the S&P 500 settled with a gain of 5.21 points or 0.13 percent at 3,966.84, while the Nasdaq finished with a loss of 51.45 points or 0.43 percent at 11,782.67.

European stocks also turned in a mixed performance. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 climbed 0.41 percent and France's CAC 40 gained 0.33 percent, while Germany's DAX drifted down 0.33 percent.

Crude oil futures settled sharply higher on Monday as concerns about outlook for energy demand eased, while the dollar's weakness ahead of the upcoming Fed statement also supported crude oil prices. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for September ended higher by $2.00 or 2.1 percent at $96.70 a barrel.

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