OPEC Meeting and Lower Asia Markets

Asian markets were down on September 26; with the market sentiment dominated by US Presidential debate. The market was also aware of the informal meeting to be held by OPEC producers. Australia showed flat as ASX 200 remains unchanged at 5,431.40. The financial sector was down by about 0.13 percent. Energy sector was likewise down by 0.07 percent. In contrast, there was a gain of 0.26 percent by materials sector. 

Banking up 

Important banking stocks in Australia went up a little. ANZ was up by 0.04 percent and Commonwealth Bank of Australia remained unchanged. Small positives of 0.14 percent and 0.10 percent were recorded by Westpac and National Australia Bank. The Kospi in South Korea closed 0.34 percent or 6.96 points down at 2,047.11. The Hang Seng Index of Hong Kong went down by 1.42 percent during trading hours in the late afternoon. Markets in mainland China also closed lower. The Shanghai Stock Exchange composite was down 1.74 percent or 52.64 points to reach 2,981.24. The Shenzhen Composite also lost 2.06 percent or 41.51 points to scrape 1,966.60.

The Nikkei 225 of Japan shed 1.25 percent or 209.46 points to 16,544.56. This happened post a speech given by Haruhiko Kuroda, the Governor of Bank of Japan. The Yen went higher after the speech. In his meeting with business leaders, Kuroda affirmed that the Japanese central bank will use any available policy tool so that it achieves the inflation target of two percent.  He confirmed that the principal policy tool at the disposal of the bank was to slash the interest rate of the policy in the shorter term even though it goes further into the negative territory. It also lowers the interest rate in the longer term. Kuroda further said that expanding the asset purchases was not an option. His aim was to completely eradicate deflation.

Not string currency

Lower was the watchword for a number of important Japanese exporters. Toyota shares were down by 0.55 percent. Nissan and Honda dropped 1.26 percent and 2.14 percent respectively. For exporters, a stronger Yen is a hindrance as it means there would be a reduction in the overseas profits when the money is converted into local currency.

Mitsubishi UFJ, SMFG and the Mizuho Financial were down by 2.06 percent, 1.41 percent and 1.26 percent respectively. According to analysts, investors from Asia have a keen year when it comes to US presidential debate. 

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