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Indian Morning Briefing: Asian Markets Mostly Lower

GLOBAL MARKETS 
DJIA         34707.94   349.44   1.02% 
Nasdaq       14191.84   269.23   1.93% 
S&P 500       4520.16    63.92   1.43% 
FTSE 100      7467.38     6.75   0.09% 
Nikkei Stock 28160.24    49.85   0.18% 
Hang Seng    21863.12   -82.83  -0.38% 
Kospi         2735.44     5.78   0.21% 
SGX Nifty*   17298.00    76      0.44% 
*March contract 
 
USD/JPY  121.83-84  -0.44% 
Range    122.43   121.73 
EUR/USD  1.1025-28  +0.27% 
Range    1.1038   1.0997 
 
CBOT Wheat May $10.856 per bushel 
Spot Gold   $1,962.11/oz   0.2% 
Nymex Crude (NY) $111.33  -$3.60 
 
 
U.S. STOCKS 

U.S. stocks rose Thursday, with Wall Street indexes recouping most of Wednesday's losses, led by gains among semiconductor and materials stocks.

The S&P 500 rose 63.92 points, or 1.4%, to 4520.16, the technology-focused Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 269.23 points, or 1.9%, to 14191.84, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 349.44 points, or 1%, to 34707.94. All three indexes declined in the previous session as concerns about rising energy prices and supply shortages again rattled investors.

All 11 sectors in the S&P 500 rose. The tech segment climbed 2.7%, followed by materials with a 2% gain. Energy, by far 2022's best performing sector, was the worst performing group on Thursday but still managed to eke out a 0.1% gain.

 
 
ASIAN STOCKS 

The Nikkei Stock Average was flat at 28114.40 as some gains in electronics stocks offset losses in tech and financial stocks. Among individual movers, Toshiba Corp. was 2.8% higher following a Nikkei report that the company would start considering privatization. Investors remain focused on the war in Ukraine and its impact on commodity prices.

South Korea's Kospi edged down 0.1% to 2728.06 in mixed early trade. Battery stocks advanced while airline shares retreated. Wall Street's rebound overnight was supporting sentiment but the upbeat mood was capped by concerns over higher inflation and supply shortages. North Korea's latest test of an intercontinental ballistic missile was also stoking geopolitical risks while the war in Ukraine continues weighing on investors' minds. USD/KRW was 0.2% higher at 1,221.10 on risk aversion. Index heavyweight Samsung Electronics was 0.1% lower.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 1.0% to 21735.61. Stricter regulations by China on online delivery and short-video platforms could weigh on related stocks, and the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict could continue to affect investor sentiment, KGI Securities said. The Hang Seng Tech Index was 1.3% lower at 4550.94. Among technology stocks, JD.com fell 3.9% and NetEase was 4.2% lower. Other decliners included property company Longfor Group Holdings, which was down 4.2%.

Chinese stocks were lower early on after a mixed start amid some U.S.-China tension over Russia's war against Ukraine. The U.S. has previously told China that bilateral relations could suffer if Beijing aids Moscow in its assault on Ukraine, an issue that was brought up Thursday at a gathering of world leaders. The Shanghai Composite Index declines 0.1% to 3248.17, the Shenzhen Composite Index falls 0.1% to 2142.72 and the ChiNext Price Index slips 0.1% to 2703.18. Covid developments will be in focus. Commerzbank reckons China's Covid-19 outbreak could weigh on 1Q GDP, noting "little sign that the new virus wave would fade any time soon as the local Covid cases are still illustrating an upward momentum." Bank stocks are lower. Bank of China drops 0.3% and Bank of Shanghai slips 0.2%.

FOREX 

NZD/AUD fell to a nine-month low and was now hovering close to key support of 0.9260, suggesting a breach of this key technical level could be on the cards. Australia & New Zealand Banking Group said the Kiwi was currently unable to keep up with the AUD, which was benefiting from higher commodity prices as Australia stands to benefit from tightening markets if Russian exports are choked off. "This move has been corroborated by the move in two-year spreads, which continue to narrow (in AUD's favor), ANZ said. NZD/AUD was last at 0.9265.

METALS 

Gold rose in early Asian trade as uncertainty around the war in Ukraine stokes risk-off sentiment. Gold prices have scope to keep rising for now, due to strong demand for haven assets amid the lack of clarity on Russia's war on Ukraine, Commerzbank said. Gold also got a boost overnight following headlines indicating that the G-7 has agreed to crack down on any gold transaction involving Russia's central bank, which will be subject to existing sanctions, FXStreet said. Spot gold was last 0.2% higher at $1,962.11/oz.

OIL SUMMARY 

Oil prices extended declines in early Asia trade after settling more than 2% lower overnight. Traders were digesting reports that Kazakhstan's Caspian Pipeline Consortium terminal could partially resume oil exports, as well as news that the EU hasn't been able to agree on a plan to boycott Russian oil, Phillip Securities said. Focus will be on developments in a European boycott agreement, without which the U.S.'s sanctions won't have the same effect. SPI Asset Management said that if Germany eventually caves to U.S. Russian oil embargo demands, that could push Brent to $150 a barrel. Front-Month WTI was down 0.3% to $112.04/bbl, while Brent was 0.1% lower at $118.95/bbl.

 
 
TOP HEADLINES 
 
Fed's Evans Sees 'Many' Rate Rises Ahead This Year 
BOJ's Kuroda Says Yen Hasn't Lost Its Credibility 
Mortgage Rates Hit Fresh Three-Year High 
Ukraine Strikes Russian Navy as War Enters Second Month 
Russian Central Bank Chief Tried to Quit Over Ukraine War 
Apple Files Arguments With Appeals Court in Battle With Epic Games' Antitrust Claims 
Saudi Firm to Take 35.4% Stake in Olam Agri Holdings 
Olive Garden Parent Cuts Fiscal 2022 Guidance on Rising Costs 
JD Logistics to Raise Over $1 Billion via Share Placements, Share Issuance 
Fallout Grows After U.K. Authority's Missteps in Unaoil Probe 
U.K. Car Manufacturing Had Worst February in 13 Years, War to Hurt Further 
U.K. Consumer Confidence Falls as Ukraine War, Inflation Dampen Mood 
FDA Rejects Eli Lilly's China-Developed Cancer Drug 
Elon Musk's SpaceX Boosts Prices for Internet Service, Rocket Launches 
Bank of Mexico Lifts Interest Rates for Seventh Time 
Europe's Economy Slows as Ukraine War Sends Costs Soaring 
Fallout Grows After U.K. Authority's Missteps in Unaoil Probe 
 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

March 24, 2022 23:16 ET (03:16 GMT)

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