Asian Shares Mixed After US Inflation Print

Asian stocks were mixed this morning and U.S. Treasury yields moved lower after U.S. inflation data released overnight largely met analysts’ estimates.

The core inflation figure (excluding food and energy prices) showed a fall, helping ease fears around inflation and interest rate-rises.

The upside seems capped after Russian President Vladimir Putin said peace talks with Ukraine are “at a dead end” and vowed to continue stocks the invasion of Ukraine that began on Feb. 24.

His Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, urged the European Union to impose sanctions on all Russian banks and set terms for when each EU state will refuse or limit Russian energy sources such as gas.

Japan’s Nikkei index was up as much as 1.6 percent, with tech stocks like Advantest, Screen Holdings and Tokyo Electron leading the surge.

Lawson soared 9.6 percent on reports the convenience store chain was planning an initial public offering for Seijo Ishii.

China’s Shanghai Composite index was down 0.4 percent as Shanghai continues to remain sealed due to a sharp rise in Covid-19 infections. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 0.3 percent after the release of Chinese trade data.

Customs data which showed China’s exports rose 13.4 percent in yuan terms year on year in January-March, while imports increased 7.5 percent.

Australian markets edged up slightly, led by gains in the energy and materials sector. New Zealand’s NZX-50 index dipped 0.4 percent after the country’s central bank raised interest rates by a chunky 50 basis points to tame inflation. South Korea’s Kospi average was up more than 1 percent.

U.S. stocks reversed earlier gains on Tuesday to end lower for a second straight session as fresh data showed inflation accelerated to a new 40-year high in March, though some components of core inflation weakened.

All three major averages slipped around 0.3 percent while two- and 10-year Treasury yields had their biggest declines in weeks amid speculation that the inflation surge that started in early 2021 is close to a peak.

U.S. consumer inflation rose 8.5 percent in March from a year ago, marking the fastest growth since December 1981.

European stocks fell on Tuesday after data showed confidence in Germany’s economic recovery slid for a second month. The pan European Stoxx 600 slipped 0.4 percent.

The German DAX dropped half a percent, France’s CAC 40 index eased 0.3 percent and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 shed 0.6 percent.

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