Stock markets in Australia, Japan and Hong Kong fall
08:53, 10 December 2021
Stock markets in Australia, Japan and Hong Kong closed lower on Friday as investors took to risk aversion ahead of a key US consumer inflation data due later in the day.
“Today’s all-important November US CPI release is no doubt the main event for rates markets. Our economics team sees the risk of an overshoot above 7% in the coming months. Considering that it is the October 6.2% print that seems to have tipped the scales in favour of an acceleration of tapering in the Fed’s mind, a print above 7% risks another hawkish reaction in US rates,” ING said in a note on Friday.
“We expect markets to remain volatile until we get greater clarity around Omicron risk, and we get through the FOMC on December 15th. Fortunately both of these potential “clearing events” are coming in the next couple of weeks, though as we’ve mentioned before two weeks can feel like an eternity in markets,” Jefferies said in its Greed & Fear weekly.
Major Asia-Pacific markets fall
In Hong Kong, the benchmark Hang Seng index snapped three straight days of gains to close 1.2% lower as technology stocks slipped. The index, however, brought a three-week decline to a halt with weekly gains of 0.8%.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 index fell 1% to 28,437.77 on broad-based losses, though the index posted its best week in five with a weekly gain of 1.5%.
Meanwhile, Australia’s benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index snapped a four-week losing streak by posting a weekly gain of 1.6%. On Friday, however, the losses among energy firms dragged the index 0.4% lower to 7,353.50.
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Alibaba Group snaps three-week losing streak
Among individual stocks, Hong Kong-listed Alibaba Group ended a three-week losing streak by posting a weekly gain of 1.5%. The company had announced an overhaul to its business structure and changed its chief financial officer this week, following which stock prices jumped over 12% on Tuesday.
Japan’s Toyota Motors slipped for a third straight day on media reports that the automaker has suspended operations in four factories on supply shortages. The stock lost 1.3% this week.
In Australia, buy-now-pay-later firm Afterpay was the top intraday percentage loser on the benchmark index, down 4.4% on Friday.