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25/09/
2023

Today’s Announcements & News

Asia

Asia-Pacific markets had a mixed performance following the Bank of Japan’s (BOJ) decision to maintain its current monetary policy. The BOJ, under Governor Kazuo Ueda, kept interest rates at -0.1% and maintained a cap on the 10-year Japanese government bond yield at around zero. Ueda emphasized the necessity of continuing an ultra-easy monetary policy until Japan achieves sustained inflation at 2%. Notably, Japan’s headline inflation figures have consistently exceeded this target since April 2022, with the latest reading indicating 3.2% inflation for August.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 closed down by 0.52%, reaching its lowest level this month at 32,402.41. The Topix index also recorded a 0.3% decline, closing at 2,376.27, marking three consecutive days of losses. In contrast, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index displayed a notable rebound, gaining 2.12% in its final hour of trading, recovering from earlier losses and emerging as the leader in terms of gains in Asia.

Mainland Chinese markets also experienced positive momentum, with the CSI 300 closing 1.81% higher at 3,738.93, bouncing back from its 10-month low. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 reversed earlier losses, posting a gain of 0.05% and closing at 7,068.8.

South Korea’s Kospi index registered a 0.27% decline, closing at 2,508.13, while the Kosdaq index continued its six-day slide, closing at 857.35, which marked its lowest level since May 31st.

US

U.S. stocks concluded a challenging week with a retreat on Friday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 106.58 points, or 0.31%, at 33,963.84. The S&P 500 shed 0.23%, finishing at 4,320.06. BThe Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.09%, closing at 13,211.81.

Ford shares rose 1.9% after reports suggested progress in negotiations with the United Auto Workers union, which had been on strike. Stellantis saw slight gains, while General Motors closed lower.

The week marked the fourth consecutive day of losses for the major indexes, driven by the Federal Reserve’s signal that it planned to maintain higher interest rates for an extended period. The S&P 500 and the technology-focused Nasdaq Composite experienced weekly losses of 2.9% and 3.6%, respectively, marking their third consecutive negative week and the worst weekly performance since March. The Dow also declined by 1.9% for the week.

Bond yields surged during the week, with the benchmark 10-year Treasury yield reaching its highest level since 2007, while the 2-year rate touched its highest level since 2006.

Commodity

Oil prices held steady on Friday, with Brent futures settling 3 cents lower at $93.27 a barrel. Despite the steady performance on Friday, Brent fell 0.3% for the week, ending a three-week streak of gains. Meanwhile, U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures rose 40 cents, or 0.5%, to $90.03 a barrel, as U.S. oil rig counts declined. However, WTI also experienced a slight decline for the week, marking its first drop in four weeks.

Gold prices edged higher on Friday, gaining 0.3% to reach $1,925.21 per ounce, following three consecutive sessions of losses. U.S. gold futures settled 0.3% higher at $1,945.60 per ounce. The uptick in gold prices was supported by a slight pullback in the dollar and bond yields as investors digested the Federal Reserve’s still hawkish stance. The dollar retreated from a six-month peak against a basket of major currencies, making gold more attractive for holders of other currencies. Additionally, benchmark 10-year Treasury yields slipped from 16-year highs.

The above analysis is only for the views of market researchers and is for reference only and is not regarded as a specific investment suggestion.

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