Asian shares expected to focus on China data, dollar languishes

Reuters

Reuters

Markets appeared to shrug off headlines that the Japanese economy grew at an annualised rate of 4% in the second quarter of the year ending in June compared to the previous year. Despite these misses, Asian markets turned upwards on Monday morning with the Shanghai Composite up 0.41 percent as of 11:33 a.m. HK/SIN and South Korea's Kospi up 0.64 percent.

European shares bounced after falling almost 3 percent last week, with the pan-European STOXX 600 up 0.7 percent following on from a 0.9 percent jump in MSCI's index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan. That easily topped the 2.5 percent rise forecast in a Reuters poll.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 climbed 0.51%, with the broader index driven by gains in the information technology and energy sub-indexes.

Thailand markets were closed for a public holiday.

Elsewhere, benchmark indexes in India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore were up between 0.2 percent and 0.8 percent, while the Taiwan Weighted lost 1 percent.

In forex trading, the dollar bought 109.37 yen, edging up from 109.11 yen in NY on Friday, but still sharply lower than 109.99 yen in Tokyo on Thursday.

Annualized GDP for previous quarter was revised to a 1.5 percent increase, while quarterly real (inflation adjusted) GDP was revised up to 0.4 percent growth from a 0.3 percent increase.

Markets also kept an eye on developments in the Korean peninsula after tensions flared up between the United States and North Korea last week.

The dollar index against a basket of six major currencies crawled up 0.1 percent to 93.145 after it slipped about 0.4 percent on Friday.

That prompted North Korea to say it was considering plans to fire missiles at the US -held Pacific island of Guam. Commonwealth Bank of Australia rose 1 percent after the bank announced the departure of its chief executive Ian Narev by the end of the 2018 financial year. CBA has recently been dogged by allegations that it potentially ignored breaches in money-laundering regulations in Australia. Gloves and protective clothing maker Ansell tumbled 3.1 percent after its full-year profit missed forecasts. The company attributed the fall in profit to increasing raw material prices and acquisition charges.

Australian shares advanced, led by material and financial stocks as London copper and aluminum prices held near recent two-year highs on a weaker dollar following Friday's weak USA inflation data.

Oil prices made gains on Friday as markets digested a mix of slowing USA oil rig additions and instability in Nigeria after protesters occupied a Royal Dutch Shell plant, Reuters reported.

The greenback rose 0.4 percent to 109.585 yen after slipping to 108.720 on Friday, its weakest since April 20.

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