Market Overview

Asia-Pacific stocks dip as data shows China’s November factory output rose

Stocks in Asia-Pacific were lower in Tuesday trade as concerns over a coronavirus surge in multiple countries dulled optimism over the vaccine rollout in the U.S. Mainland Chinese markets were lower by the afternoon: The Shanghai composite declined 0.45% while the Shenzhen component slipped 0.147%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was 0.65% lower.

China’s industrial production grew 7% year-on-year in November, the country’s National Bureau of Statistics announced Tuesday. That was in line with expectations from a Reuters poll. Meanwhile, retail sales in China increased 5% in November as compared with a year ago, missing forecasts for a 5.2% increase by analysts in a Reuters poll.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 dipped 0.33% while the Topix index traded 0.5% lower. South Korea’s Kospi shed 0.65%. Shares in Australia were also lower, with the S&P/ASX 200 down 0.17%. Minutes from the Reserve Bank of Australia’s December policy meeting released Tuesday warned of the possibility of “an extended period of high unemployment” as it would take time for output to reach its pre-pandemic level. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan declined 0.54%.

Overnight on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 184.82 points lower at 29,861.55. The S&P 500 declined by 0.44% to finish its trading day at 3,647.49. The Nasdaq Composite, on the other hand, rose 0.5% to close at 12,440.04. The U.S. coronavirus death toll topped 300,000, outpacing every other country in the world by a margin of 100,000, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, as Americans received some of the first shots of Pfizer’s vaccine. New York City’s mayor warned that the city could experience a “full shutdown” soon.

Elsewhere, London will be moved into England’s toughest tier of coronavirus restrictions from midnight on Wednesday morning.

Asia-Pacific stocks dip as data shows China’s November factory output rose, CNBC, Dec 15

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