Investing.com - Asian stock markets were mixed on Tuesday, after
U.S. lawmakers missed a deadline to avert a government shutdown,
the first in 17 years.
During late Asian trade, Australia's ASX/200 Index ended down
0.18%, Japan's Nikkei 225 Index closed 0.2% higher, while Hong
Kong's Hang Seng Index remained closed for a public holiday.
The U.S. government began a partial shutdown after lawmakers failed
to reach an agreement on a new budget before Monday's midnight
deadline. It is the first government shutdown in the U.S. since
Meanwhile, in China, a government report showed that the nation's
manufacturing purchasing managers' index inched up to 51.1 in
September from 51.0 in August, missing forecasts for 51.5.
Chinese markets will be closed until October 7 for the Golden Week
In Tokyo, the Nikkei swung between gains and losses after Japanese
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced plans to raise the sales tax to
8% from 5%, starting in April. Abe also said he will unveil a
stimulus package designed to ease the impact of the increased tax.
Meanwhile, in Australia, the ASX/200 Index edged lower after the
Reserve Bank of Australia held its benchmark interest rate at a
record low of 2.5% earlier in the session.
Following the decision, AUD/USD rose to hit a session high of
0.9400, the strongest since September 26.
The big four banks were mixed following the announcement, with
National Australia Bank shares adding 0.25%, while Westpac Banking
Group shed 0.6%. Commonwealth Banking Group inched up 0.2%.
Looking ahead, European stock market futures pointed to a modestly
The EURO STOXX 50 futures pointed to a gain of 0.1% at the open,
France's CAC 40 futures inched up 0.1%, London's FTSE 100 futures
indicated a rise of 0.1%, while Germany's DAX futures pointed to a
gain of 0.2% at the open.
Investors were closely watching political developments in Italy,
with Prime Minister Enrico Letta due before parliament for a vote
of confidence on Wednesday after Silvio Berlusconi pulled his
ministers out of the coalition government on Saturday.
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