New COVID Curbs Dampen Asia Sentiment

Asia-Pacific stocks were mostly lower in Thursday trade, with mainland Chinese markets falling despite the release of better-than-expected May trade data.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 inched up 12.24 points to 28,246.53.

The Japanese yen traded at 133.83 per U.S. dollar, weaker as compared with levels below 132 seen earlier in the week.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index tumbled 145.54 points, or 0.7%, to 21,869.05.

The Australian dollar was at $0.7177, still off levels above $0.725 seen last week.

CHINA

Sentiment surrounding the COVID situation in mainland China may have dampened investor sentiment on Thursday, as the government announced that parts of Shanghai will re-impose new COVID restrictions.

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 subtracted 44.13 points or 1.1%, to 4,175,68.

China’s exports jumped 16.9% in May as compared with a year ago, Reuters reported Thursday. That bested expectations by analysts in a Reuters poll for a 8% rise.

Imports were also higher than expected, rising 4.1% against expectations for a 2% increase, according to Reuters.

In other markets

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index dipped 16.18 points, or 0.5%, to 3,209.62.

In Taiwan, the Taiex index skidded 49.17 points, or 0.3%, to 16,621.34.

In Korea, the Kospi docked 0.71 points to 2,625.44.

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 swooned 54.92 points, or 0.5%, to 11,211.31

In Australia, the ASX 200 retreated 101.36 points, or 1.4%, to 7,019.75.