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  • Asian equities fail to cheer China’s vaccine news amid rising numbers from the US, lockdown in Anxin County.
  • Updates from New Zealand, Australia flash mixed signals but bears keep the helm.
  • Japan’s Retail Trade, surge in Tokyo cases drowned Nikkei, NZX 50 welcomes comments from RBNZ’s Orr.
  • US data, Brexit talks and virus updates will be the key.

The week’s start in Asia spreads pessimism amid rising coronavirus (COVID-19) cases and downbeat second-tier data. Also favoring the bears are concerns of lockdown in China’s Anxin County and UK’s Leicester. Additionally, the India-China tussle and trade wars between the US and the rest of the global economies offer extra negatives to the Asian shares. Amid all these concerns, the previous optimism surrounding the restart of major economies after the virus-led lockdowns has been dashed.

As a result, MSCI’s index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan drops 1.25% while Japan’s Nikkei 225 also bears the burden of downbeat Retail Trade data to drop over 2.0% as we write. Further, Australia’s ASX 200 fails to benefit from PM Scott Morrison’s statements but New Zealand’s NZX 50 justifies the RBNZ Governor Adrian Orr’s welcome to weak retail rates with over 1.30% gain as we write.

Elsewhere, Chinese traders returned with good news on the virus vaccine after a long weekend. Though, a strict lockdown in Anxin recalls the fears of Wuhan-like spread of the virus. As a result, Beijing markets remain down around 1.0% with Hong Kong following the footsteps to revisit the sub-24,300 area.

On a broader scale, Texas and Florida have been flashing red signals in the US which are recently joined by numbers from Arizona and Los Angeles. These numbers not only drowned the US stock futures but also dimmed the odds of President Donald Trump’s re-election as Trump administration campaigns have been hit hardly by the latest virus outbreak. It should also be noted that the US-led trade wars, considering the recently announced tariff threats anti-dumping investigations, add burden onto the market’s risk-tone. Hence, the US 10-year Treasury yields remain pressured near the monthly low of 0.64% by the press time.

Today’s economic calendar doesn’t offer much to watch, except for German inflation figures and the US second-tier data. Even so, the key Brexit talks in Brussels, virus updates and trade war news could keep the traders on their toes.