Asia markets tentative ahead of Opec meeting

Wednesday 2.30am GMT Overview Markets across Asia were treading cautiously on Wednesday, following mild overnight gains for Wall Street, a weakening of the US dollar and as investors turned their attention to a meeting between Opec members later today. What to watch Oil prices are in focus ahead of Wednesday’s Opec meeting in Vienna. The […]

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Banks, Financial

RBS emerges as biggest failure in tough UK bank stress tests

Royal Bank of Scotland has emerged as the biggest failure in the UK’s annual stress tests, forcing the state-controlled lender to present regulators with a new plan to bolster its capital position by at least £2bn. Barclays and Standard Chartered also failed to meet some of their minimum hurdles in the toughest stress scenario ever […]

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Barclays: life in the old dog yet

Barclays, a former basket case of British banking, is beginning to look inspiringly mediocre. The bank has failed Bank of England stress tests less resoundingly than Royal Bank of Scotland. Investors believe its assets are worth only 10 per cent less than their book value, judging from the share price. Although Barclays’s legal team have […]

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Currencies, Equities

Scary movie sequel beckons for eurozone markets

Just as horror movies can spook fright nerds more than they expect, so political risk is sparking heightened levels of anxiety among seasoned investors. Investors caught out by Brexit and Donald Trump are making better preparations for political risk in Europe, plotting a route to the exit door if the unfolding story of French, German […]

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Dollar rises as markets turn eyes to Opec

European bourses are mirroring a tentative Asia session as the dollar continues to be supported by better US economic data and investors turn their attention to a meeting between Opec members. Sentiment is underpinned by US index futures suggesting the S&P 500 will gain 3 points to 2,207.3 when trading gets under way later in […]

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Categorized | Currencies

Japan stocks boosted by sliding yen, mild gains for other Asian markets

Posted on November 25, 2016

Equities markets around Asia are mostly higher on Friday in a session kept subdued by Wall Street taking a holiday overnight for Thanksgiving. The US dollar continues to climb, though, most notably pushing the yen to its weakest level in eight months.

Japan is still the standout story in Asia today. Continued strength in the US dollar is keeping the yen under pressure, with the Japanese currency breaking through the ¥‎113 mark yesterday and getting closer to weakening below ¥‎114 to the dollar on Friday.

That is helping exporters lead the Japanese stock market higher, with the Topix benchmark on track for an 11th straight day of gains.

But there was also some encouraging news for the economy, as Japan looked to be shaking off the spectre of deflation. Data showed headline consumer prices turned positive in October for the first time since February, while a measure of underlying inflation that strips out food and energy prices rose last month after registering zero growth in September.

In general, foreign exchange is where the fireworks has been this week, with the likes of China’s renminbi, India’s rupee, Malaysia’s ringgit and the Philippines peso all hitting multi-year lows against the US dollar.

Today, the yen is the worst-performer among Asian currencies, 0.4 per cent weaker at ¥‎113.72 per dollar. Next worst is the Malaysian ringgit, down 0.2 per cent, while the Australian dollar is the best performer, up by about one-third of 1 per cent today.

Japan’s benchmark Topix was up 0.7 per cent, while the Nikkei 225 gained 0.8 per cent. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was up 0.6 per cent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.3 per cent. China’s Shanghai Composite was down 0.4 per cent, and the technology-focused Shenzhen Composite shed 0.6 per cent.