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Stocks & Shares

Asia-Pacific stocks mixed as Fed in focus


Nikkei 225 dropped 0.13%, Topix index declined 0.19%, Shanghai composite jumped 0.35%, Shenzhen component lost 0.2%, Hang Seng index climbed 1.15%, Kospi added 0.97%

Shares in Asia-Pacific were mixed on Friday after heavy losses for some regional markets in the previous trading day, as investors continue to assess the impact of a potentially faster-than-expected policy tightening by the U.S. Federal Reserve.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan shed earlier gains and dropped 0.13%, adding to losses after a nearly 3% decline on Thursday. The Topix index also dropped into negative territory as it declined 0.19%.

Elsewhere, mainland Chinese stocks were mixed as the Shanghai composite jumped 0.35% while the Shenzhen component lost 0.2%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index climbed 1.15%.

South Korea’s Kospi added 0.97%. Shares in Australia were up, with the S&P/ASX 200 gaining 1.29%.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan inched up 0.6%.

Markets were spooked earlier in the week and dropped sharply after minutes from the Fed’s December meeting showed officials at the central bank ready to aggressively dial back policy help.

The yield on the benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury note rose 1.75% on Thursday, last sitting at 1.7158% — still much higher after ending 2021 at 1.51%. Yields move inversely to prices.

Hong Kong-listed shares of Chinese real estate firms were mixed on Friday after Reuters reported that developer Shimao Group defaulted on a trust loan, renewing concerns over the sector.

Shimao shares in Hong Kong slumped 7.04% while Kaisa Group shed 1.23%. Meanwhile, China Evergrande Group jumped 2.42% and Sunac climbed 2.91%. The Hang Seng Properties index added 1.48%.

Overnight on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) shed 170.64 points to 36,236.47 while the S&P 500 lost nearly 0.1% to 4,696.05. The Nasdaq Composite shed 0.13% to nearly 15,080.87.

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