Asian markets ended Thursday’s session mostly in negative territories with the Nikkei 225 being the only exception as investors digested the Federal Reserve’s decision to keep interest rates unchanged.
The U.S Federal Reserve decided to keep base rates unchanged on Wednesday, in line with market expectations, the Fed did not indicate when the next rate hike will be, although it said that US economic was “rising at a solid rate.”
Furthermore, market participants took what the Fed said as an indication for another hike on December, as odd for a hike in December rose to 98.2 percent according to CME’s fed watch tool.
Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump is expected to choose Fed Governor Jerome Powell for the position of Fed reserve Chair, as per the Wall Street, with an announcement anticipated on Thursday U.S time.
In greater China, major markets ended the session in negative territories, with the Shanghai Composite falling by 0.37 percent to trade at 3,383.31 at the close, while the Shenzhen Composite lost 067 percent to end the session at 1,989.98. Moreover, in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index declined by 0.26 percent to trade at 28,518.64 at the close.
Over in South Korea, equities ended the session in red territories, as losses in Blue-Chip Teck stocks pulled the Kospi lower, South Korea’s leading index KOSPI fell by 0.40 percent to settle at 2,546.36 at the close.
Japan (Nikkei 225)
Japan’s Nikkei 255 ended the session on a positive note as gains in automaker stocks led shares higher; Japan’s leading benchmark rose by 0.53 percent to trade at 21-year highs at 22,539.12.
Against the yen, the U.S. currency rose to trade at 114.03, compared to Wednesday's close of 114.06 yen.
In corporate news, Japanese Automaker Honda saw its share surge by 5.2 percent after the firm raised full-year profits in the year ending March to come in at 745 billion yen, above previous estimates of 725 billion yen, as per Reuters. Furthermore, the rise in estimate is due to robust auto sales in China.
Australia (ASX 200)
The Australian benchmark index ASX200 traded slightly lower on Thursday, Aussie shares fell as losses in the Financial and Telecommunication sectors added pressure on the stock market; Australia’s Primary benchmark ASX 200 lost 0.10 to end the session at 5,931.71 at the close.
The big four banks ended in the red, with National Bank of Austalia saw its shares lost nearly 3 percent of its value, while ANZ banking, Westpac and Commonwealth bank were in a range between 0.4 percent to 0.6 percent.
In Corporate New, National Australian Bank (NAB) saw its share price tumble by nearly 3 percent after the bank announced that it will cut 4,000 jobs over the next three years, NAB shares price fell despite the bank announced a 2.5 increase in full-year profits to 6.64 billion Australian dollars.
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