Asia shares hold steady after robust China trade data; yen remains stable

Asia shares hold steady after robust China trade data; yen remains stable
Asia shares hold steady after robust China trade data; yen remains stable (Image: Reuters)
Asia shares hold steady after robust China trade data; yen remains stable
Asia shares hold steady after robust China trade data; yen remains stable (Image: Reuters)

Asia shares hold steady after robust China trade data; yen remains stable

Asia shares hold steady after robust China trade data; yen remains stable

Asia shares hold steady after robust China trade data; yen remains stable

SYDNEY, May 9 (Reuters) – Asian shares steadied on Thursday after solid Chinese trade data added to signs domestic demand in the world’s second-largest economy is picking up, while the yen stabilised after three days of declines as Japan talked up potential currency interventions.

Later in the day, the Bank of England (BoE) will decide its interest rate policy, with all eyes on the prospects of a June rate cut following the overnight move by Sweden’s Riksbank to cut rates, which underlined Europe’s divergence from the U.S. Federal Reserve.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (.MIAPJ0000PUS), opens new tab rose 0.1%, hovering not far from a 15-month high hit earlier in the week after Fed Chair Jerome Powell reiterated a stance for policy easing later this year.

Investors will be focusing on the U.S. consumer inflation data for April due next Wednesday after three straight prints of upside surprises for a better sense of the direction of the Fed’s policy.

Chinese customs data showed that imports jumped 8.4% in April from a year ago, beating expectations for a rise of 4.8%, while the gain in exports met forecasts.

That helped Chinese shares build on earlier gains, with bluechip stocks (.CSI300), opens new tab rising 1% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index (.HSI), opens new tab increasing 1.2%.

Japan’s Nikkei (.N225), opens new tab rose 0.5%. Nasdaq stock futures eased 0.1%, dragged lower by Uber (UBER.N), opens new tab, which fell 5.7% overnight as the ride-sharing company issued a downbeat forecast after a surprise quarterly loss.

“A first rate cut by the Riksbank has not been enough to further push the bullish sentiment. Eyes are on the Bank of England,” said analysts at ING in a note to clients.

“Since Powell’s dovish stance just last week, markets will listen carefully for a similar direction as the Fed. This also means that markets may face a surprise if a similar turn towards more dovishness is not reflected in this BoE meeting.”

The Japanese yen steadied at 155.55 per dollar after falling for three sessions. It rose more than 3% last week after Japanese authorities likely intervened in the market twice to stem its fast declines.

On Thursday, the top currency diplomat Masato Kanda said there is no limit for reserves in currency intervention, keeping traders on edge, while minutes from the Bank of Japan’s April meeting showed policymakers turned overwhelmingly hawkish, helping the yen steady.

However, Japan’s real wages in March fell 2.5% from a year earlier, marking declines for two years, an argument for policymakers to not hike aggressively.

In the Treasuries market, yields were little changed after edging up the day before, with movements likely to be muted ahead of the U.S. inflation report next week. Two-year yields held at 4.8470%, while the 10-year yield was at 4.5003%, having risen 3 basis points overnight.

Oil prices were higher on Thursday, having bounced off two-month lows the previous session. Brent futures rose 0.4% to $83.91 a barrel, while U.S. crude gained 0.5% to $79.40 a barrel.

Gold prices were 0.1% higher at $2,311.23 per ounce.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by VoM News staff and is published from syndicated feed)

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