SINGAPORE – Asia Pacific stocks were lower on Wednesday after an overnight slump for the S&P 500 in the US as investors became increasingly concerned about rising bond yields.
In Japan, the Nikkei 225 was down 0.75% in morning trading while the Topix index was down 0.4%.
Japan’s exports rose 6.4% in January year over year. This is clear from trade statistics released by the country’s Treasury Department on Wednesday.
Taiwan Taiex bucked the general trend as it rose 3% and shares of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company rose 5%.
The Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong fell 0.45%. South Korea’s Kospi fell 1.35%.
Stocks in Australia were lower when the S & P / ASX 200 fell 0.63%.
The broadest MSCI index for stocks in the Asia-Pacific region outside Japan fell 0.2%.
Markets in mainland China will be closed on Wednesday for the New Year holidays.
Government bond yields are rising
On Wall Street overnight, the S&P 500 closed 0.1% at 3,932.59 while the Nasdaq Composite was down 0.3% to end its trading day at 14,047.50. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 64.35 points to a record close of 31,522.75.
The moves in the US came when the 10-year Treasury yield rose 9 basis points to 1.3% on Tuesday – a level not seen since February 2020. The 30-year rate also reached its highest level in a year. The return on the 10-year treasury was most recently 1,3006%.
“The rise in yields has been driven by mounting inflation concerns over the rise in energy prices, as well as the prospect of a major fiscal stimulus in the US and the global recovery entering a more solid phase with the introduction of the vaccine, leading to the reopening of economies led. ” Rodrigo Catril, a currency strategist at National Australia Bank, wrote in a note.
Currencies and oil
The US dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its competitors, was 90.726 after rebounding from below 90.3.
The Japanese yen was trading at 106.07 per dollar after weakening against the greenback from below 105.2 earlier this week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $ 0.7741 after seeing a level of $ 0.78 yesterday.
Oil prices were lower on the morning of trading hours in Asia and the international benchmark Brent crude oil futures fell 0.63% to $ 62.95 a barrel. The US crude oil futures also fell 0.55% to $ 59.72 a barrel.
– CNBC’s Yun Li contributed to this report.