In Asian Equity Markets indices fell Tuesday afternoon following negative trade developments overnight. Shares in Australia led losses regionally, with the S&P/ASX 200 falling more than 2%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index declined 0.15% by the afternoon, with shares of retailers such as Sa Sa and L’Occitane falling. Data on Monday showed total retail sales volume for October in the Hong Kong fell 26.2% year-on-year, its worst decline on record, according to a Reuters report. The embattled city has been rocked by months of anti-government protests. The Nikkei 225 in Japan was 0.69% lower while South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.5%.
In Currency Markets the U.S. dollar traded near a one-week low versus the yen on Tuesday and near the lowest in almost two weeks against the euro, on concern about weak U.S. manufacturing data and signs of new fronts in the U.S. trade war. Sentiment also took a hit after U.S. President Donald Trump announced tariffs on metal imports from Brazil and Argentina. The dollar traded at 109.00 yen on Tuesday in Asia, close to its lowest in a week. It was quoted at $1.1076 versus the euro after falling 0.56% on Monday, its biggest decline against the single currency since Sept. 17.
In Commodities Markets oil prices rose for a second day on Tuesday as Saudi Arabia, the de facto OPEC leader and the world’s biggest oil exporter, is pushing producers to deepen a supply cut agreement when suppliers meet this week, potentially lowering supply in 2020. Brent futures rose 19 cents, or 0.3%, to $61.11 a barrel, after gaining 0.7% on Monday. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was up by 21 cents, or 0.4%, at $56.17 a barrel. The contract rose 1.4% on Monday. OPEC ministers will meet in Vienna on Thursday and the wider OPEC+ group will gather on Friday.
In US Equity Markets stocks fell on Monday after President Donald Trump said he would restore tariffs on metal imports from Brazil and Argentina, while weak domestic manufacturing data fanned worries of a slowing economy due to a prolonged trade war with China. The S&P 500 was down 0.80%, at 3,115.77 and the Nasdaq Composite fell 1.23%, at 8,558.83. Retail stocks were in focus, with Cyber Monday sales expected to hit a record following $11.6 billion in online sales on Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Still, the S&P 500 retail sector was down 1.25%. Among other stocks, Roku Inc dropped 16% after Morgan Stanley downgraded its shares.
In Bond Markets the U.S. Treasury yield curve steepened on Monday as investors digested a report of unexpectedly weak U.S. construction spending. The U.S. yield curve, typically measured as the difference between the yields on two- and 10-year U.S. Treasury notes was at 20.6 basis points, up 4.6 basis points from Friday’s close. Immediately following the data, the spread hit its highest since Nov. 18. The benchmark 10-year yield was 5.2 basis points higher on the day, at 1.82%. The two-year yield , typically an indication of interest rate expectations, was 2 basis points higher at 1.62%.