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  • Asian equity bulls catch a breather around record tops.
  • Weekend headlines concerning Brexit, covid vaccine and US stimulus suggest the worst is over.
  • BOJ survey indicates upbeat activity performance in the Q4, G10 likely extending monetary easing in 2021.

Asian shares print gains with light colors ahead of Monday’s European session. While the continuation of the Brexit negotiations and the start of the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccinations in the US favored the risks earlier in Asia, hopes of the US covid stimulus and upbeat data from Japan helped keep the upside momentum afterward. However, a light calendar and the multi-month high of various indices in the Asia-Pacific region keep the bulls chained.

That said, MSCI’s index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rise 0.08% whereas Japan’s Nikkei 225 and Australia’s ASX 200 are up nearly half a percent by the press time. New Zealand’s NZX 50 drops 0.30% even as PM Jacinda Ardern eyes opening the national border with Australia. The reason could be traced from the early-day downbeat figures of Visitor Arrivals and Business NZ PSI for October and November respectively.

Elsewhere, Brussels and London agreed to take another chance, for a week, to sign a Brexit deal whereas the US policymakers are inching closer to the much-awaited aid package. Further, the White House Staff will be among the first to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.  

Chatters concerning the sustainability of global monetary easing in 2021 and hopes that Asia-Pacific equities will keep the shine in the upcoming year also favored the risks.

On the contrary, the local lockdowns in the US and Germany’s extension of national activity restrictions keep the virus woes on the table whereas UK PM Boris Johnson doesn’t sound optimistic despite getting one more week to convince the ex-neighbor over the trade deal.

Stocks in China, Indonesia and India print gains ranging from 0.5% to 1.0% while South Korea’s KOSPI consolidate near the record top with no major moves. Additionally, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng bucks the trend, while also joining NZX 50, with mild losses.

Looking forward, global traders await US stimulus and further vaccine-related news to keep the risk-on mood while eyeing the end of 2020. Though, this week’s Fed, BOJ meetings can entertain the markets.