Asia Stocks Face Mixed Open; Dollar Strengthens: Markets Wrap

Traders expected a mixed start for stocks across Asia after the dollar climbed and Treasuries rose, with investors assessing the impact of the latest tit-for-tat in the trade war as well as sanctions on Russia that hit the ruble.

Futures signaled modest gains for stocks in China, Hong Kong and Australia, while Japanese equities were set for a muted open. The dollar rose against its G-10 counterparts and Treasury yields dropped as investors sought safe haven assets following American economic data that were generally on the soft side.

Geopolitical tensions between the U.S. and other countries set the tone for markets this week as China responded to the Trump administration’s latest trade war volley with additional tariffs of its own. The ruble hit a two-year low after the U.S. announced new sanctions on Russia over the March 4 nerve-agent attack on a former double agent in the U.K. Turkey’s lira plunged to a record and bond yields climbed as a dispute over the detention of an American pastor dragged on.

Elsewhere, oil nudged lower. Tesla shares rose in post-market trading after CNBC reported that its board of directors planned to meet with financial advisers next week to formalize a process to take the co. private and would ask CEO Elon Musk to recuse himself from the process.

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The last key events for this week is a report on U.S. consumer prices. They probably rose in July from June, consistent with a pickup in inflation that’s projected to keep the Federal Reserve on a path of gradual interest-rate increases, economists forecast.

These are the main moves in markets:


  • Futures on Japan’s Nikkei 225 slid less than 0.1 percent.
  • Futures on the FTSE China A50 Index rose 0.3 percent.
  • Futures on Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index and on Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index climbed 0.2 percent.
  • The S&P 500 fell 0.1 percent.


  • The yen held at 111.09 per dollar.
  • The offshore yuan was flat at 6.8463 per dollar.
  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index rose 0.5 percent.
  • The euro bought $1.1529.


  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries declined three basis points to 2.93 percent.


  • West Texas Intermediate crude fell 0.2 percent to $66.81 a barrel.
  • Gold futures were steady at $1,212.51 an ounce.
  • The Bloomberg Commodity Index lost 0.3 percent.

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