Asia-Pacific stocks set for mixed start; Japan's first-quarter GDP data ahead


SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific looked set for a mixed start on Tuesday, as investors await the release of Japan’s preliminary GDP data for the first quarter.

Futures pointed to a lower start for Japanese stocks. The Nikkei futures contracts in Chicago and Osaka both sat at 27,800, as compared with the Nikkei 225’s last close at 27,824.83.

Japan’s preliminary GDP data for the first quarter is expected to be out at around 7:50 a.m. HK/SIN on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, stocks in Australia looked set to open in positive territory. The SPI futures contract was at 7,030, as compared with the S&P/ASX 200’s last close at 7,023.60.

Minutes from the Reserve Bank of Australia’s May policy meeting are also set to be out at 9:30 a.m. HK/SIN.

On the coronavirus front, the World Health Organization warned Monday that the global pandemic isn’t over yet despite high Covid vaccination rates in some countries. In Asia, places such as Singapore and Taiwan have seen a recent resurgence in local infections, prompting authorities to tighten restrictions in a bid to stem the virus’ spread.

Overnight stateside, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dipped 54.34 points to close at 34,327.79 while the S&P 500 shed 0.25% to 4,163.29 and the Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.38% to end the trading day on Wall Street at 13,379.05.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 90.164 — still off levels above 90.8 seen recently.

The Japanese yen traded at 109.19 per dollar after strengthening from levels around 109.5 against the greenback yesterday. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7769, stronger than levels below $0.774 seen last week.

Here’s a look at what’s on tap:

  • Japan: Preliminary data for first quarter gross domestic product at 7:50 a.m. HK/SIN
  • Australia: Minutes from the Reserve Bank of Australia’s May policy meeting at 9:30 a.m. HK/SIN



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