(RTTNews) – Asian stock markets are trading mostly lower on Thursday, following broadly negative signals from Wall Street overnight, amid lingering concerns over the deteriorating health of the global economy and the possibility of higher interest rates leading to a recession. The post-opening spike in Covid-19 cases in China is also dampening market sentiment. Asian markets closed mostly lower on Wednesday.
Traders are now eagerly awaiting next week’s closely watched monthly US jobs report, which may shed additional light on the outlook for interest rates and the economy. Australia’s stock market is significantly lower on Thursday, extending losses from the previous two sessions, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index falling below 7,000 following broadly negative signals from Wall Street overnight, with a weakness in most sectors, led by energy and mining stocks on weaker commodity prices.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 lost 88.30 points or 1.25% to 6,998.10, after hitting a low of 6,995.30 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries index is down 87.40 points or 1.20% at 7,174.80. Australian shares ended slightly lower on Wednesday.
Among the major miners, BHP Group is down more than 1%, mineral resources are down more than 2% and Rio Tinto is down almost 1%, while OZ Minerals and Fortescue Metals are down 0.2% each.
Oil inventories are mostly lower. Woodside Energy and Santos are down more than 3% each, while Origin Energy is down nearly 1% and Beach Energy is down more than 2%.
In the tech space, Afterpay owner Block is down 0.3%, Xero is down almost 1% and WiseTech Global is down 1.5%, while Appen is up almost 2% and Zip is adding more from 1 %.
Among the big four banks, Commonwealth Bank and National Australia Bank are down nearly 1% each, while Westpac is down more than 1%. ANZ Banking Bank is stable.
Among gold miners, Northern Star Resources is down almost 2%, Newcrest Mining is down more than 1%, Gold Road Resources is down almost 1% and Evolution Mining is down 1.5%. Resolute Mining is flat.
In the currency market, the Australian dollar is trading at $0.674 on Thursday.
The Japanese stock market is down sharply on Thursday, extending losses from the previous session, with the Nikkei 225 falling below 26,000, following broadly negative signals from Wall Street overnight, with weakness in most sectors. , led by exporters, technology and financial stocks.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 closed the morning session at 25,998.76, down 341.74 points or 1.30%, after hitting a low of 25,953.92 earlier. Japanese stocks closed slightly lower on Wednesday.
The SoftBank group, a heavyweight in the market, lost nearly 2% and the operator Uniqlo Fast Retailing was also down nearly 2%. Among automakers, Toyota and Honda fell 0.4 to 0.5% each.
In technology, Screen Holdings, Advantest and Tokyo Electron lost almost 1% each.
In the banking sector, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial and Mizuho Financial lost almost 1% each, while Sumitomo Mitsui Financial lost more than 1%.
Among the main exporters, Mitsubishi Electric, Panasonic and Sony lost almost 1% each, while Canon lost 2.5%.
Among other big losers, IHI Corp. down more than 3%, while Aozora Bank, Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Fukuoka Financial Group are down nearly 3% each.
Conversely, Nexon gains nearly 5%.
In the currency market, the US dollar is trading in the upper range of 133 yen on Thursday.
Elsewhere in Asia, South Korea and Hong Kong are down 1.4 and 1.2%, respectively. China, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Taiwan are lower by 0.3 to 0.9% each. New Zealand bucked the trend and posted an increase of 0.3%.
On Wall Street, stocks showed a lack of direction in early trading on Wednesday, but fell sharply during the session. With the day’s sharp decline, the tech-heavy Nasdaq ended the session at its lowest closing level in more than two years.
Major averages ended the session just off their worst levels for the day. While the Nasdaq plunged 139.94 points or 1.4% to 10,213.29, the S&P 500 plunged 46.03 points or 1.2% to 3,783.22 and the Dow Jones fell 365 .85 points or 1.1% at 32,875.71.
Meanwhile, major European markets delivered a mixed performance on the day. While Britain’s FTSE 100 index rose 0.3%, Germany’s DAX index and France’s CAC 40 index fell 0.5% and 0.6% respectively.
Crude oil prices fell on Wednesday on worries about the outlook for energy demand amid fears of a global recession and rising COVID-19 cases in China. West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures for February ended down $0.57 or 0.7% at $78.86 a barrel.
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