Asian Shares Slide As Focus Stays On US Tech, Not Local Data
- Asian stocks stumbled into the end of the week
- Tech names remain heavy as investors rethink valuations in the US
- The Euro is still shining at the US Dollar’s expense
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Asian stocks struggled into week’s-end Friday despite some stronger-than-expected Chinese economic data.
Thursday’s US tech selloff found an echo in certain Asian names and this stymied progress for equity across the board. Worries that US giants’ valuations look a bit stretched are weighing on the global sector. Still, China’s economy remains in reasonable shape according to official Purchasing Managers Index data, with solid, if not stellar, growth still clearly evident.
The Nikkei 225 ended down 0.9% with all other regional bourses lower with the excetption of the Shanghai Composite which managed very modest gains.
The Euro remains the foreign-exchange markets’ darling amid growing expectations that some monetary stimulus will be scaled back. The single currency is around fourteen-month highs against its US rival. The British Pound continued to benefit from similar hopes, while the Australian Dollar got a lift from those Chinese numbers. The overall US Dollar index inched back through Asia’s Friday.
There was little reaction to Japanese employment and consumer price figures which in both cases were better than the headlines suggested. However any change to Japanese monetary policy would still appear to be some way off.
Gold prices were steady thanks to those weaker stock markets but worries about tighter global monetary policy kept bullishness in check. This week’s news of a decline in US output still has crude oil prices underpinned. Indeed, they look set for their best week since mid-May, even if ancient fears of a hugely oversupplied global market can hardly have dissipated to any great extent.
The week may be bowing out but there’s plenty of economic life left in it. Friday will bring news of Eurozone consumer prices and German unemployment. The ‘final’ official look at British first-quarter growth is coming up, with Canadian GDP figures due as well. From the US investors can look forward to the University of Michigan’s venerable consumer-sentiment snapshot, personal consumption and expenditure numbers and the Baker-Hughes count of the nation’s oil rigs.
--- Written by David Cottle, DailyFX Research
Contact and follow David on Twitter: @DavidCottleFX
DailyFX provides forex news and technical analysis on the trends that influence the global currency markets.