Dow Today – Asia-Pacific stocks slip; China’s first quarter GDP print slightly misses expectations
SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific were largely lower in Friday morning trade as investors reacted to the release of Chinese economic data.
Mainland Chinese stocks declined as the Shanghai composite fell slightly while the Shenzhen component slipped 0.626%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index fell 0.14%.
China’s gross domestic product surged 18.3% in the first three months of the year from a year ago, the country’s National Bureau of Statistics said Friday. That was slightly lower than expectations for a 19% increase, according to analysts polled by Reuters.
Meanwhile, retail sales jumped 34.2% in March, beating expectations of 28% growth. Industrial production missed expectations as it rose 14.1% in March, against Reuters’ prediction of 17.2% growth.
The Nikkei 225 in Japan was largely flat while the Topix index dipped 0.17%. South Korea’s Kospi was 0.2% lower.
Australian stocks slipped as the S&P/ASX 200 declined 0.32%.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.28% lower.
Investors will watch markets in India on Friday as the Covid situation in the country remains severe, with data released Thursday showing daily virus infections crossing the 200,000 mark.
Overnight stateside, the Dow surged 305.10 points to a record close of 34,035.99 — the first time it has crossed the 34,000 level. The S&P 500 also reached a record high, jumping 1.11% to 4,170.42. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 1.31% to 14,038.76.
Currencies and oil
The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, sat at 91.768 following its weakening earlier this week from above 92.1.
The Japanese yen traded at 108.84 per dollar, having strengthened from levels above 109.6 against the greenback earlier in the trading week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7727, above levels below $0.768 seen earlier this week.
Oil prices were mildly lower in the morning of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures sitting below the flatline as they traded at $66.91 per barrel. U.S. crude futures shed 0.11% to $63.39 per barrel.
— CNBC’s Evelyn Cheng contributed to this report.