Banks

RBS share drop accelerates on stress test flop

Stressed. Shares in Royal Bank of Scotland have accelerated their losses this morning, falling over 4.5 per cent after the state-backed lender came in bottom of the heap in the Bank of England’s latest stress tests. RBS failed the toughest ever stress tests carried out by the BoE, with results this morning showing the lender’s […]

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Currencies

Renminbi strengthens further despite gains by dollar

The renminbi on track for a fourth day of firming against the dollar on Wednesday after China’s central bank once again pushed the currency’s trading band (marginally) stronger. The onshore exchange rate (CNY) for the reniminbi was 0.28 per cent stronger at Rmb6.8855 in afternoon trade, bringing it 0.53 per cent firmer since it last […]

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Financial

Sales in Rocket Internet’s portfolio companies rise 30%

Revenues at Rocket Internet rose strongly at its portfolio companies in the first nine months of the year as the German tech group said it was making strides on the “path towards profitability”. Sales at its main companies increased 30.6 per cent to €1.58bn while losses narrowed. Rocket said the adjusted margin for earnings before […]

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Property

Spanish construction rebuilds after market collapse

Property developer Olivier Crambade founded Therus Invest in Madrid in 2004 to build offices and retail space. For five years business went quite well, and Therus developed and sold more than €300m of properties. Then Spain’s economy imploded, taking property with it, and Mr Crambade spent six years tending to Dhamma Energy, a solar energy […]

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Currencies

Nomura rounds up markets’ biggest misses in 2016

Forecasting markets a year in advance is never easy, but with “year-ahead investment themes” season well underway, Nomura has provided a handy reminder of quite how difficult it is, with an overview of markets’ biggest hits and misses (OK, mostly misses) from the start of 2016. The biggest miss among analysts, according to Nomura’s Sam […]

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Asia mixed as glow of oil rally fades


Posted on September 30, 2016

Women walk past an electronic stock indicator of a securities firm in Tokyo, Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2016. Major Asian stock markets were lower Wednesday after investors were reassured by trade-friendly Hillary Clinton's performance in a U.S. presidential debate with rival Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi)©AP

Friday 05:45 BST. The fire lit under markets by news of Opec’s tentative agreement to cut oil production sputtered out, with Asian markets broadly down following a lacklustre US trading session.

Taking the lead from Wall Street’s S&P 500 Index, which closed down 0.9 per cent on Thursday, equities across the Asia-Pacific region struggled to hold onto the previous day’s gains.

The declines followed the release of data showing that Japanese consumer prices remained in deflationary territory, household spending tumbled in August, and the country’s jobless rate nudged up.

Marcel Thieliant, senior Japan economist at Capital Economics, said that while consumer spending data “send conflicting messages for third-quarter gross domestic product growth, the solid rise in industrial production in August suggests that Japan’s economy continued to recover in the third quarter”.

The yen strengthened 0.33 per cent to ¥101.34 against the dollar. Japan’s broad Topix index was down 1.2 per cent, dragged lower by losses in utilities providers such as Kansai Electric Power, which fell 3.9 per cent. The Nikkei 225 also fell 1.3 per cent.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 benchmark index fell 0.6 per cent, with as few as a dozen stocks in positive territory. The blue chip S&P/ASX 20 had just a three stocks rising.

In Hong Kong, the benchmark Hang Seng Index fell 1.3 per cent as only four of 50 members managed to exit negative territory. Shares listed on the mainland were faring slightly better, with the Shanghai Composite Index up 0.1 per cent and the tech-focused Shenzhen Composite rising 0.3 per cent.

Futures were tipping the S&P 500 to open down 0.2 per cent, while European stocks are expected to open flat.

Chris Weston, IG chief market strategist, said that following reports that hedge funds were pulling business from Deutsche Bank, traders’ attention in Europe would “be focused on the open of the German DAX and it seems likely that the media focus will be on their subordinated credit-default swaps (CDS) as well”.

Major currencies in the region were mixed as the dollar index, which measures the US currency against a basket of international peers, stood virtually flat at 95.558.

The Australian dollar, often viewed as a proxy for Chinese growth, briefly strengthened following a Caixin manufacturing PMI reading that showed a return to marginal growth in September, but was unable to hold on to those gains and weakened 0.1 per cent against the greenback to $0.7625.

After pushing upward earlier in the week, Brent crude, the international benchmark, rolled back more of its recent gains to be down 0.6 per cent at $49.93 a barrel. West Texas Intermediate, the US benchmark, was down 0.5 per cent at $47.58 a barrel.

Fixed income markets were muted, with the yield (which moves inversely to price) on US 10-year Treasuries falling 2 basis points to 1.5445 per cent in Asian trade. The yield on 10-year Japanese government bonds was up 1 basis point at minus 0.072 per cent while that of Australian 10-year government bonds shed 6 basis points to 1.914 per cent.

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