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Asian shares up on China gains but tech worries weigh

Stock Markets47 minutes ago (Apr 19, 2021 10:25PM ET)

(C) Reuters. A man is reflected on a stock quotation board in Tokyo

By Alun John

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Asian shares rose on Tuesday, led by a stronger Chinese opening and shaking off the initial drag from tech-driven Wall Street losses, while the dollar stayed at multiweek lows against other major currencies.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gained 0.2%, swinging into positive territory after Chinese blue chips rose 0.13%. South Korea gained 0.4%.

Elsewhere, Japan’s Nikkei dropped 1.84%, as the country continues to grapple with a resurgence in COVID cases. Australia slipped 0.33%.

Hong Kong fell 0.11% although Chinese food delivery giant Meituan’s shares rose 1.59% after the company said it had raised a huge $9.98 billion through an equity and convertible bond sale.

Earlier, major Wall Street indexes drew back from record highs hit list week, with a big drag from Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) Inc.

The electric-car maker slid 3.4% after a Tesla vehicle believed to be operating without anyone in the driver’s seat crashed into a tree on Saturday north of Houston, killing two occupants.

“This morning in Asia looks like a continuation of what we saw last night, where tech stocks got hit in the U.S.,” said Mick McCarthy, Chief Markets Strategist, CMC Markets.

McCarthy said that the falls in Japan were striking given the yen strength caused by the falling dollar, which would normally be supportive for Japanese stocks, adding he thought this would change one way or the other later in the day.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq was the biggest mover, falling 0.98%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 0.36%, and the S&P 500 0.53%.

However, e-mini futures for the S&P 500 rose 0.13%, suggesting markets could bounce back later in the day.

In currency markets, the dollar continued its recent weakness, falling further from six week lows it hit on Monday.

“In our view, USD can remain heavy this week as focus shifts from U.S. economic outperformance to the improving global economic outlook more broadly,” wrote analysts at CBA in a research note.

In Asian trade, the dollar dropped 0.08% against the yen, while the Australian dollar gained 0.14% and the Euro gained 0.07% on the dollar respectively.

The yield on benchmark 10-year Treasury notes rose to 1.6029% compared with its U.S. close of 1.599%.

Oil prices continued to rise. U.S. crude ticked up 0.19% to $63.50 a barrel, and Brent crude rose to $67.2 per barrel.

Asian shares up on China gains but tech worries weigh

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