Asia Fairly Flat Amid Growth Concerns

Stocks in Asia struggled for direction on Tuesday as weak economic data in Europe fuelled fears of slowing growth and weighed on investor sentiment.

Japanese markets returned from a long weekend Tuesday, as the Nikkei 225 gained 19.75 points, or 0.1%, to 22,098.84, despite shares of index heavyweights Fast Retailing sinking 1.2%, and Softbank Group declining 1.8%,

The Japanese yen traded at 107.59 per U.S. dollar after seeing an earlier high of 107.46

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index regained 58.6 points, or 0.2%, to 26,281.

Shares of Anheuser-Busch InBev’s Asian business were priced at HK$27 apiece, the bottom of the range in the firm’s second attempt at listing in Hong Kong. The stock is scheduled to start trading on Sept. 30.

Data released Monday stoked fears of a deteriorating global economic outlook. Manufacturing activity in Germany fell to its lowest level since the financial crisis this month, data from IHS Markit showed. Germany’s services sector also grew at its slowest pace in nine months.

Overall, manufacturing in the euro-zone fell to a more than six-year low while services grew at its slowest pace in eight months.

The Australian dollar was at $0.6773 following its decline from levels above $0.685 seen last week.


In China, the CSI 300 restored 10.42 points, or 0.3%, to 3,901.08

On the trade front, Chinese importers bought 10 boatloads of U.S. soybeans following last week’s trade negotiations between the two economic powerhouses.

In other markets

In Korea, the Kospi index added 9.34 points, or 0.5%, to 2,101.04

In Taiwan, the Taiex Index eased back 1.01 points to 10,918.01

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index regained 12.22 points, or 0.4%, to 3,155.46.

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 dropped 14.62 points, or 0.1%, to 10,858.71

In Australia, the ASX 200 moved lower 0.85 points to 6,748.87