Asian stocks retreat as yen rises; Nikkei down 0.7%

Shutterstock photo - Asian stocks slid for a second consecutive day Tuesday as a rebounding yen weighed on Japanese exporters and traders pondered possible monetary action from global central banks later this week as well as another fiscal debate in the U.S.

In Asian trading Tuesday, Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 0.7%. Much as the yen has plunged since Shinzo Abe launched his bid to become Japan's prime minister in mid-November, the Nikkei has surged 22 percent on the back of Abe's calls for the Bank of Japan to engage unlimited monetary easing.

During Tuesday's Asian session, Japanese exporters were among the leading decliners due to a rebounding yen. A stronger yen crimps profits for exporters.

Elsewhere, Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 0.46% while stocks on mainland China were weak as well with the Shanghai Composite lower by 0.07%.

South Korea's Kospi fell 0.44% despite a stronger-than-expected profit update from industrial conglomerate Samsung.

Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index was off slightly following a weaker-than-expected trade balance report. Australia's trade balance fell more-than-expected last month, according to a report released earlier today. n a report, Australian Bureau of Statistics said that Australia's trade balance fell to a seasonally adjusted -2.64B, from -2.44B in the preceding month whose figure was revised down from -2.09B. Analysts had expected Australia's trade balance to fall to -2.30B last month.

Traders may also be mulling the looming debt ceiling debate in the U.S. The debt ceiling. The debt ceiling is the amount of debt the U.S. can carry at any one time and the last time the debate was in focus in 2011, riskier assets, including equities and oil, were punished as political wrangling spooked financial markets.

During the last debt ceiling fiasco, Standard & Poor's stripped the U.S. of the prestigious AAA credit rating. In recent weeks, traders have speculated that another credit downgrade could be in the offing for the U.S. if politicians do not move swiftly to raise the debt ceiling. The U.S. currently has a credit rating of AA+ from Standard & Poor's.

Meanwhile, New Zealand's NZSE 50 was up fractionally while Singapore's Straits Times Index lost 0.13%. - offers an extensive set of professional tools for the Forex, Commodities, Futures and the Stock Market including real-time data streaming, a comprehensive economic calendar, as well as financial news and technical & fundamental analysis by in-house experts.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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