Asian shares were down on Tuesday as investors waited for tax reform development in the U.S. and absorbed weak China economic data.
China industrial value-added output rose 6.2 percent year-on-year in October, lowering from 6.6-percent growth in September, based on data from the National Bureau of Statistics. The country’s retail sales rose 10 percent on the year in October. Its private fixed-asset investment grew 5.8 percent on year in the first ten months of the year, lower than the 6-percent growth for the first nine months. The Chinese economy is still developing, but the focus is on assessing whether that growth is slowing.
MCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 0.17 percent after two sessions of decrease.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 stock index remained at 22,380.01 after trading in a narrow margin.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was almost unmoved at 29,177.14 and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 dipped 0.9 percent to 5,968.70. South Korea’s Kospi was down 0.2 percent to 2,526.65. The Shanghai Composite index lost 0.5 percent to 3,429.74. However, shares in Taiwan and Southeast Asia were mostly higher.
Investors were waiting for any indications of compromise on U.S. tax policy after U.S. Senate Republicans on Thursday revealed a plan that would slash corporate taxes a year later than a rival House of Representatives’ bill.
The Standard and Poor’s 500
The outcome of U.S. tax change legislation is still indefinite. It would extremely slash corporate taxes, make the standard deduction used by most Americans two-fold, and restrict or revoke fully the federal deduction for state and domestic property, income, and sales taxes. It brings high political stakes for President Donald Trump and Republican leaders in Congress.
In commodity markets, gold stayed at $1,276.50 an ounce. The metal has remained broadly within $15 an ounce of its 100-day moving average, presently at $1,277 an ounce, for most of the month.
Oil prices held in a tight range as help from the EU faces a critical test beginning on Tuesday when lawmakers try to conquer concessions on legislation to cut ties.
In electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, benchmark U.S. crude lost 15 cents to $56.61 per barrel. It gained 2 cents to $56.76 on Monday. Brent crude, which is used to price international oils, dipped 20 cents to $62.96 a barrel in London.
Meanwhile, most of the currency markets are quiet, with the dollar scarcely changes against a basket of counterparts at 94.488. The euro strengthened to $1.1675 from $1.1656.
The dollar stayed at 113.67 yen after bouncing from 113.25 support overnight.
Sterling soared at $1.3117, having dipped as far as $1.3063 on Monday amid worries on British Prime Minister Theresa May governance.
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