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  • Asian equities stay positive amid hopes of covid vaccine calling in faster economic recovery.
  • China-linked jitters, covid woes in the West fail to disappoint Asian bulls amid a light calendar.
  • BOJ “Summary of Opinions” repeated Governor Haruhiko Kuroda’s favorite lines.
  • Oil drops after Ever Given refloats in Suez Canal.

Asian shares part ways from S&P 500 Futures amid economic optimism during early Monday’s quiet trading. A light calendar and the age-old US-China tensions failed to stop the bulls. Against this backdrop, MSCI’s index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rises 0.4% whereas Japan’s Nikkei adds 1.17% by the press time.

Other than the broad risk-on in Asian equity markets, the Bank of Japan’s (BOJ) readiness to keep the monetary policy easy and clarify yield band offered extra support to Japanese indices.

US President Joe Biden’s push to more vaccinations and a target to jab all the adults by May favored hopes of faster economic recovery. Also on the positive side were chatters over the $3.0 trillion infrastructure spending plan from US President Biden.

On the contrary, US Trade Representative (USTR) Katherine Tai’s rejection to trade relief for China as well as Beijing’s criticism of the Western group comprising the US, the UK, Canada and the European Union (EU), weighs on the risks. Also, escalating covid fears in Europe and vaccine jitters are extra challenges to the sentiment.

Even so, stocks in China are on their move to recovery early-March equity rout whereas those from Hong Kong, South Korea and Indonesia are also on the positive side. Markets in India are off due to the Holi celebration whereas those from Australia and New Zealand print mild losses as Brisbane announces a three-day lockdown.

On a broader front, S&P 500 Futures drop 0.60% intraday whereas the US 10-year Treasury yield searches for clear direction by the press time. Oil is also on the move as the stuck container in the Suez Canal finally moves after nearly a week.

Considering the lack of major data/events, equities are likely to cheer faster vaccinations and hopes of stimulus unless the US-China tussles escalate.

Also read:  S&P 500 Futures snap two-day uptrend amid covid fears, Sino-American jitters