Asia stocks trade mixed; dollar edges higher

(Bloomberg pic)

SYDNEY: Asian stocks opened the week mixed, and the dollar built on its recent rally. The pound retreated as UK Prime Minister Theresa May ruled out a second Brexit vote.

Stocks slipped in Japan and South Korea at the open, while Australian shares edged higher. The S&P 500 closed flat Friday as gains in consumer shares offset losses in energy stocks, while Treasuries posted a modest decline. US markets are closed for Labor Day on Monday.

With US stocks reaching a fresh all-time high in August and the Federal Reserve set to raise interest rates again later this month, investors are hoping the global economy can withstand shocks from trade restrictions. Emerging markets remain under pressure, with Argentina and Turkey the latest epicentres for crises denting sentiment.

West Texas crude was trading around US$70 a barrel. The Canadian dollar slipped after Nafta talks stalled.

Main moves in markets:

Stocks

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index fell 0.4% as of 9.05am Tokyo time. Topix index declined 0.4%. Kospi index fell 0.3%. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 0.1%.

Currencies

The Japanese yen fell 0.1% to 111.10 per dollar. The offshore yuan fell 0.1% to 6.8537 per dollar. The euro fell less than 0.05% to $1.1597. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index rose 0.1% to 1,183.53.

Bonds

The yield on 10-year Treasuries closed Friday at 2.86%. Australia’s 10-year yield fell two basis points to 2.503%.

Commodities

West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.2% to US$69.93 a barrel. Gold fell 0.2% to $1,199.09 an ounce.