Asian equities were broadly higher on Wednesday as investors looked past protectionism tussles and instead focused on U.S. stocks approaching fresh all-time highs. China’s yuan extended gains triggered by further moves to stabilize the currency.
Equity benchmarks in Japan, Hong Kong and South Korea headed higher, while stocks in China retreated. The S&P 500 Index closed at the highest level since its Jan. 26 peak. The dollar and Treasury yields were steady.
Adding to previous moves to ease pressure on the currency, the People’s Bank of China urged some lenders to prevent any “herd behavior” and momentum-chasing moves in the currency market, according to people familiar with the matter. Japanese bond yields nudged higher as a summary of opinions from policy makers at the Bank of Japan’s July 30-31 meeting showed one member had wanted freedom for yields to move up and down by around 0.25 percent on either side of the zero percent target.
Trade tensions remain in focus as the U.S. said it will begin imposing 25 percent duties on an additional $16 billion in Chinese imports in two weeks. It will be the second time the U.S. slaps duties on Chinese goods in about the past month, despite complaints by American companies that such moves will raise business costs and eventually consumer prices.
Elsewhere, Tesla Inc. surged shares after Elon Musk proposed taking the company private. Earlier, a rise in emerging-market equities overshadowed rising woes in Turkey, where the yield on the country’s 10-year bonds touched a record high amid a diplomatic spat with the U.S.
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Here are some key events coming up this week:
- Samsung Electronics unveils its next Galaxy Note smartphone.
- U.S. consumer prices probably rose in July, consistent with a pickup in inflation that’s projected to keep the Federal Reserve on a path of gradual interest-rate increases, economists forecast before Friday’s release.
These are the main moves in markets:
- Japan’s Topix index rose 0.3 percent as of 11:10 a.m. in Tokyo.
- Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index gained 0.3 percent.
- South Korea’s Kospi index climbed 0.2 percent.
- Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.2 percent.
- The Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.5 percent.
- S&P 500 Index futures were flat. The S&P 500 rose 0.3 percent.
- The yen was at 111.39 per dollar.
- The offshore yuan was flat at 6.8270 per dollar after rising 0.7 percent. Onshore the yuan rose 0.3 percent to 6.8098 per dollar.
- The euro bought $1.1605, up less than 0.1 percent.
- The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was little changed.
- The yield on 10-year Treasuries held at 2.97 percent.
- Australia’s 10-year bond yield rose two basis points to 2.68 percent.
- Japan’s 10-year bond yield was at 0.11 percent.
- West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.1 percent to $69.23 a barrel.
- Gold gained 0.2 percent to $1,213.35 an ounce.
Read more: http://www.bloomberg.com/