Yen to Dollar rose, Euro was steady, Pound gained; Most Asian equities declined 

A man looks at an electronic board showing the stock market indices of various countries outside a brokerage in Tokyo

Japan stocks led declines in most Asian equities, with the yen extending gains amid more twists and turns on trade and lingering emerging-market risks. The dollar was steady and 10-year Treasury yields extended their decline below 3 percent.

Automakers were the biggest drag on the Topix index, as the yen surged after President Donald Trump ordered consideration of a probe into automobile imports. Shares fell in Australia and South Korea, and rose in Hong Kong. All major U.S. equity benchmarks rose Wednesday after minutes from the most recent Federal Reserve meeting showed American central bankers in no hurry to accelerate the pace of rate hikes even as the economy continues to improve. Oil slipped.

Traders need to navigate escalating geopolitical and trade risks, from Trump’s decision to back away from a recently announced trade agreement with China to uncertainty about whether a planned summit meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un will go ahead. Meanwhile, questions are swirling around the Italian populist government’s economic policies and shaky emerging markets after Turkey raised interest rates to halt a slide in the lira.

Elsewhere, Asian emerging-market currencies were steady to lower, while most bonds advanced. The euro was steady after falling to a six-month low.

These are some key events to watch this week:

  • Thursday sees the Bank of England Markets Forum at Bloomberg London. Speakers include BOE Governor Mark Carney and New York Fed President William Dudley.
  • At the St. Petersburg Forum Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin and French President Emmanuel Macron, IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, and Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe participate on a panel moderated by Bloomberg News Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait.
  • Also Friday, European Union finance ministers discuss the latest on Brexit talks, in Brussels.

These are the main moves in markets:


  • The Topix index fell 1.3 percent as of 2:09 p.m. in Tokyo.
  • S&P/ASX 200 Index lost 0.1 percent.
  • Kospi index fell 0.1 percent.
  • Hang Seng Index was little changed.
  • S&P 500 Index futures fell 0.2 percent. The S&P 500 Index rose 0.3 percent.
  • The MSCI Asia Pacific Index declined 0.3 percent.


  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was less than 0.1 percent lower.
  • The Japanese yen rose 0.6 percent to 109.44 per dollar, adding to a 0.7 percent jump.
  • The euro was steady at $1.1708, near the weakest in more than six months.
  • The British pound gained 0.2 percent to $1.3370, after sinking to the weakest since December.


  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries fell 2 basis points to 2.98 percent.
  • Australia’s 10-year bond yield dropped four basis points to 2.78 percent.


  • West Texas Intermediate crude decreased 0.4 percent to $71.58 a barrel.
  • Gold rose 0.2 percent to $1,295.35 an ounce.
  • LME copper fell 0.2 percent to $6,853 a metric ton.

Source: Bloomberg – Japan Stocks Fall, Rest of Asia Drifts; Yen Jumps: Markets Wrap

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