Asian Shares Mixed On Brexit Fears
(RTTNews) - Asian stocks ended mixed on Tuesday as the prospect of more Brexit-related market turmoil as well as uncertainty surrounding the much-awaited trade talks between the U.S. and China kept investors on the sidelines.
After a new round of retaliatory tariffs by the world's two largest economies took effect over the weekend, investors waited to see if Chinese and American officials will begin the next round of trade talks this month to resolve the trade war.
On the Brexit front, former British chancellor Philip Hammond said he believes rebel Conservative MPs have the numbers to defeat Prime Minister Boris Johnson's government in a crucial Commons vote.
Chinese shares ended higher, with tech stocks pacing the gainers as investors cheered Beijing's continued push for tech independence amid the bruising trade war with the United States.
The benchmark Shanghai Composite index rose 6.05 points, or 0.21 percent, to 2,930.15 while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index ended down 98.70 points, or 0.39 percent, at 25,527.85.
Japanese shares ended marginally higher as a weaker yen helped lift exporters. The Nikkei average inched up 4.97 points to finish at 20,625.16, while the broader Topix index ended up by 5.58 points at 1,510.79.
Exporters Panasonic, Sony, Toyota Motor, Honda Motor and Nissan Motor rose between 0.6 percent and 1.3 percent as the yen edged further away from an eight-month high hit last week. Subaru shares jumped 2.4 percent.
Sumitomo Metal Mining Co advanced 1.8 percent as the price of Nickel soared to a five-year high on supply concerns. Real estate group Cosmos Initia Co surged as much as 7.5 percent following the recent fall in bond yields.
Australian markets fluctuated before finishing on a flat note as the Reserve Bank of Australia kept the cash rate on hold at a record low and reiterated that rates can be cut "if needed".
Both the S&P/ASX 200 and the All Ordinaries index ended the session marginally lower at 6,573.40 and 6,673.50, respectively.
The big four banks ended narrowly mixed while mining heavyweights BHP and Rio Tinto ended down 0.4 percent and 0.8 percent, respectively. Total's partner Oil Search rallied 2.1 percent ahead of Papua New Guinea's decision on a gas deal.
In economic releases, Australia's current account registered its first surplus in 44 years in the second quarter, while retail sales declined for the first time in three months in July, separate reports showed.
South Korea's Kospi average slid 0.18 percent to 1,965.69 as investors digested inflation and GDP data.
Annual inflation dipped to a record low in August and the Bank of Korea revised down the economic growth for the April-June period to 1.0 percent sequentially from a 1.1 percent gain reported earlier, strengthening the case for another central bank rate cut as early as next month.
New Zealand shares rose sharply as Finance Minister ruled out expectations of witnessing unconventional policy in the country in the short-term.
The benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index rallied 153.92 points, or 1.43 percent, to 10,953.92. Shares of energy retailer Contact Energy jumped as much as 8 percent.
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