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James Hyerczyk
Asian Stocks
Asian Stocks

The major Asian stock indexes are trading mixed on Tuesday morning with shares in Japan, Hong Kong and Australia posting gains and stocks in China and South Korea being pressured. The price action closely reflected the sideways-to-higher trade on Wall Street on Monday. For a second session, investors were keeping an eye on the U.S.-China trade talks which began on Monday.

CNBC reported that China said on Monday that it is willing to resolve its trade disputes with the U.S. on an equal footing, according to Lu Kang, spokesman at the Chinese foreign ministry.

In the meantime, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Monday that U.S. tariffs have placed pressure on China’s economy and ability to create jobs to avert social unrest.

Both statements failed to generate any movement in the market.

In the cash market at 0322 GMT, Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index was trading 20199.79, up 160.82 or +0.80 percent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was at 25908.71, up 73.01 or +0.28 percent and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was trading 5714.80, up 31.60 or 0.56 percent.

China’s Shanghai Index was trading 2524.17, down 8.92 or -0.35 percent and South Korean’s KOSPI Index was at 2034.63, down 2.47 or -0.12 percent.

Samsung Announces Fourth Quarter Guidance

On Tuesday, South Korean tech giant Samsung Electronics said that its fourth-quarter earnings likely decreased 28.71 percent from a year ago. The number missed market expectations, coming in 18.18 percent less than analysts had predicted. The company blamed lackluster demand in its memory chip business as well as growing competition in the smartphone segment.


Australian Trade Surplus Drops 4.4% in November

Sticking with the Asian-Pacific region, Australia’s trade surplus dropped 4.4 percent to $1.93 billion in November, with a near billion-dollar increase in combined gold, fuel and metal ore exports offset by higher import costs, and an expected drop in coal exports.

According to seasonally adjusted data released on Tuesday by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the country’s balance on goods and services decreased $88 million in November, down from October’s revised $2.01 billion. Analysts were looking for the trade balance to drop to $2 billion.

The AUD/USD retreated on the news.

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