Asia Mixed as Trade Talks Near

Baystreet Foreign Markets Wrap |

Asian stocks closed narrowly mixed on Thursday as the yield on the U.S. 10-year Treasury stayed above 3%. Investors also kept an eye on the second round of U.S.-China trade talks.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 reasserted itself 121.14 points, or 0.5%, to 22,838.37, shrugging off weak core machinery orders — a leading indicator for capital expenditure — for the month of March.

Against the yen, the U.S. dollar firmed to trade at 110.46

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index ditched 168.05 points, or 0.5%, to 30,942.15, as banks and insurers slipped. Most sectors traded in negative territory before the market close, with property developers also weighing on the index, although the technology sector advanced.

That came after shares of Tencent got a boost after the tech giant reported first-quarter net profit rose 61% to 23.9 billion yuan ($3.66 billion U.S), topping an average Thomson Reuters forecast of 17.5 billion yuan. Tencent stock jumped 4.3%

In Korea, technology shares were mixed, with index heavyweight Samsung Electronics easing 0.9%.

Australian stocks subsided as the heavily weighted financials sub-index declined 0.4%, dragging the index lower but paring steeper losses seen earlier. The materials and energy sectors, meanwhile, were among the sectors carving out gains.

CHINA

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 fell 28.79 points, or 0.7%, to 3,864.05

Trade was also back in the picture as a second round of U.S.-China talks kicked off, this time taking place in Washington. Trade-related frictions had spooked markets earlier this year, with investors at the time concerned over the impact of tariffs on growth.

In other markets

In Korea, the Kospi index dropped 11.37 points, or 0.5%, to 2,448.45

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index notched higher 3.71 points, or 0.1%, to 3,536.76

In Taiwan, the Taiex Index dropped 63.76 points, or 0.6%, to 10,833.81

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 regained 47.87 points, or 0.6%, to 8,603.38

In Australia, the ASX 200 eased 12.7 points, or 0.2%, to 6,094.26

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