Wednesday 20th May: Asian markets mixed as virus vaccine rally gives up.

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Global Markets:

  • Asian Stock Markets : Nikkei up 0.79%, Shanghai Composite down 0.51%, Hang Seng down 0.13%, ASX up 0.24%
  • Commodities : Gold at $1753.30 (+0.44%), Silver at $17.98 (+0.42%), Brent Oil at $34.74 (+0.26%), WTI Oil at $31.87 (-0.28%)
  • Rates : US 10-year yield at 0.695, UK 10-year yield at 0.232, Germany 10-year yield at -0.456

News & Data:

  • (GBP) CPI y/y 0.80% vs 0.90% expected
  • (AUD) Retail Sales m/m -17.90% vs 8.50% previous
  • (USD) Building Permits 1.07M vs 1.00M expected
  • (GBP) Claimant Count Change 856.5K vs 675.0K expected
  • UK inflation drops to lowest since 2016 as coronavirus hits
  • Chinese state media labels Australia ‘the dog of the United States’

Markets Update:

Asian stock markets are mostly lower on Wednesday after a report from medical news website STAT raised concerns about the trial results of biotech company Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine. The decline comes just a day after global stock markets rallied on reports of positive results from the phase one trial of the potential COVID-19 vaccine.

Mainland Chinese stocks edged lower on the day, with the Shanghai composite 0.5% and the Shenzhen component down 0.9%. In Japan, the Nikkei 225 rose 0.8% to close at 20,595.15 while the Topix index gained 0.6%. Over in Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.2%.

In currency markets the euro remained supported in the afterglow of a Franco-German proposal for a common relief fund – a possible way through tensions between European Union members. Other majors steadied, while the Aussie and kiwi battled, mostly without success, to break out of the ranges that have held them for months.

Oil prices were mixed in the afternoon of Asian trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures up fractionally as US oil futures dipped.

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