Stock markets in the Asia-Pacific region ended trading on Thursday without a single dynamics.
This week the market continues to follow the corporate reporting season that has begun. Investors are concerned about the prospect of raising key rates to fight record inflation levels. Their concerns are related to the possible risks of an economic recession.
The Japanese Nikkei 225 index added 0.4% by the close of trading.
Among the growth leaders as part of the indicator are shares of optical equipment manufacturer Nikon Corp. (+3%), electrical equipment manufacturer GS Yuasa Corp. (+2.7%) and IT companies Fujitsu Ltd. (+2.1%).
The Bank of Japan, following a two-day meeting that ended on Thursday, decided to maintain the parameters of ultra-soft monetary policy. The short-term interest rate on deposits of commercial banks with the Central Bank was left at minus 0.1% per annum, the target yield on ten-year government bonds is about zero.
However, the bank raised its forecast for consumer price growth in the country in the current fiscal year to 2.3% from 1.9% announced in April. At the same time, the forecast for GDP growth was worsened to 2.4% from 2.9%.
The volume of Japanese exports in June rose by 19.4% compared to the same month of the previous year, to the maximum since November 2021 8.628 trillion yen ($62.4 billion), according to the Japanese Ministry of Finance. The increase in exports is noted for 16 months in a row. Experts on average expected it to increase by 17.5% in June, according to Trading Economics.
Meanwhile, the volume of imports soared 1.46 times (46.1%), to 10.012 trillion yen. Analysts, on average, had forecast a 45.7% rise after a 48.9% jump in May.
Thus, Japan’s foreign trade deficit last month amounted to 1.384 trillion yen, compared with a surplus of 369.4 billion yen a year earlier.
The Hong Kong Hang Seng fell 1.5%, the Shanghai Shanghai Composite – 1%.
The decline leaders in Hong Kong were papers of real estate and construction companies in China, including Country Garden Services Holdings Co. Ltd. (-8.9%), Longfor Group Holdings Ltd. (-7.2%) and China Resources Land Ltd. (-3.8%). Also, the shares of restaurant chain operator Haidilao International Holding Ltd. ended the session in a significant minus. (-4.3%).
The South Korean Kospi index rose 0.9%.
Capitalization of one of the world’s largest manufacturers of chips and consumer electronics Samsung Electronics Co. increased by 2.2%. Shares of a major South Korean automaker Kia Corp. rose by 0.5%.
Automaker Hyundai Motor Co. in the second quarter of 2022 increased net profit by more than one and a half times, better than expected. The price of the company’s shares did not change as a result of trading.
The Australian S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.5%.
Shares of the payment service Zip Co. jumped in price by 16.5% on news that the company may restructure its international operations to reach a profitable level.
Capitalization of the world’s largest mining companies BHP Group Ltd. and Rio Tinto Ltd. fell by 0.9% and 2% respectively.