Asia shares before of us on the defensive, while oil prices edged lower on Monday (Sept 28) as investors were cautious before a US Presidential debate and as coronavirus cases spike again during a blow to global economic recovery hopes.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.04 per cent to 547.79, not too faraway from a two-month low of 543.66 hit last week.
The index is about to finish the month deep within the red after three straight monthly gains because the pandemic continues to wreak economic havoc round the world and raises investor anxiety about sky-high valuations.
Asia shares: US presidential debate, oil dips
Particularly worrying may be a resurgence of Covid-19 cases in Europe, dousing earlier hopes that authorities may need began to exert some control on the outbreak and raising further strains on businesses already grappling with losses.
Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.65 per cent, partly on a lower yen, while South Korea’s KOSPI index gained 0.8 per cent.
Australia’s main share index slipped 0.2 per cent as investors were cautious despite positive news on the coronavirus front with new infections within the country’s second-most populous state of Victoria down sharply and allowing authorities to ease a number of the mobility restrictions.
Market focus also will get on progress on a replacement fiscal support package within the us while investors also will be closely watching UK-Europe post-Brexit trade talks as they continue in the week .
In currencies, the dollar was hovering near a two-week high against the japanese yen at 105.56.
The euro was last at US$1.1631, shortly from a two-month trough of US$.1611 touched on Friday.
The British pound rose 0.1 per cent to US$1.2760.
The risk sensitive Australian dollar held at US$0.7041 after falling for 6 consecutive sessions as odds narrowed over the prospect of further monetary policy easing within the country.
The kiwi was barely changed at US$0.6552.
In commodities, oil prices were struggling as renewed mobility curbs in various countries to contain a resurgence of coronavirus cases cloud the outlook on fuel demand recovery.
US Brent crude slipped 11 cents to US$41.81 a barrel while US light crude was down 20 cents at US$40.05.
Gold held at US$1,860.5, still how off an all-time peak of above US$2,000 an oz touched in August.