Wednesday,23 April,2014

Asia shares mixed

Stocks in Hong Kong fell on signs of further contraction in China’s manufacturing sector, while a rally on Wall Street bolstered Japan in a quiet, holiday-shortened week for regional markets.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 recovered 157.50 points, or 1.1%, to 14,546.27

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index stumbled 221.04 points, or 1%, to 22,509.64

Gains came as the U.S. dollar was little changed against the yen, trading at ¥102.53 versus ¥102.61 late Tuesday in New York. The beginning of U.S. President Barack Obama’s three-day state visit to Japan was on the radar in Tokyo as traders watched for any progress on trade talks.

Japanese railroad and hotel-chain operator Seibu Holdings Inc. traded higher in its return as a public company, gaining 10.6% over its initial public offering price. The company’s core entity, Seibu Railway Co., was de-listed from the Tokyo Stock Exchange in December 2004 for doctoring its financial statements.

Disappointing earnings from blue-chip Chinese companies also weighed on stocks in Hong Kong and Shanghai. Shares of China Mobile Ltd. , the world’s largest telecom carrier by subscribers, fell 2.6% in Hong Kong after the company said intensifying competition and handset subsidies for Apple Inc.’s iPhones hurt its first-quarter earnings.

The Shanghai CSI 300 docked 2.13 points, or 0.1%, to 2,194.67.

Negative economic data from China weighed on markets, as manufacturing activity in the region’s largest economy showed another month of contraction. A preliminary report from HSBC on China’s manufacturing sector in April came out at 48.3 from a final reading of 48.0 in March, remaining below the 50 mark that distinguishes expansion from contraction.

In other markets;

Taiwan’s Taiex Index subtracted 17.79 points, or 0.2%, to 8.956.92

Singapore’s Straits Times Index eased 19.52 points, or 0.6%, to 3,258.01

Korea’s Kospi Index drifted lower 3.85 points, or 0.2%, to 2,000.37

New Zealand NZX 50 index strengthened 37.98 points, or 0.7%, to 5,142.92

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 improved 38.46 points, or 0.7%, to 5,517.77


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