Asia-Pacific Stocks Lower As Investors React To Hot U.S. Inflation Report

February 11, 2022
Asia-Pacific Stocks Lower As Investors React To Hot U.S. Inflation Report
Shares in Asia-Pacific declined in Friday morning trade, tracking losses overnight on Wall Street.

Shares in Asia-Pacific declined on Friday, as investors in the region reacted to the Thursday release of a hotter-than-expected U.S. consumer inflation report that pushed the 10-year Treasury yield past 2%.

Mainland Chinese stocks closed lower, with the Shanghai composite falling 0.66% to 3,462.95 while the Shenzhen component shed 1.546% to 13,224.38. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index declined 0.24%, as of its final hour of trading.

South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.87% on the day to 2,747.71, with shares of game developer Krafton plunging 12.79% after it announced Thursday a 84.9% year-on-year drop in its net profit for the fourth quarter.

Investors monitored moves in U.S. bond yields on Friday, after the U.S. consumer price index for January showed a hotter-than-expected 7.5% year-over-year rise — its largest gain since 1982. The reading was also higher than Dow Jones estimates of 7.2% for the closely watched inflation gauge.

The benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury yield, which crossed 2% Thursday stateside after starting the year at 1.51%, last sat at 2.0206%. Yields move inversely to prices.

The major indexes on Wall Street tumbled overnight, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropping 526.47 points to 35,241.59 while the S&P 500 shed 1.81% to 4,504.08. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite lagged as it plunged 2.1% to 14,185.64.

U.S. stock futures later pointed to further losses ahead stateside. In the afternoon of Asia trading hours on Friday, Dow futures fell 120 points. S&P 500 futures shed 0.58% while Nasdaq 100 futures declined 0.76%.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 96.007 against an earlier low of 95.806.

The Japanese yen traded at 116.05 per dollar, weaker than levels below 115.8 seen against the greenback yesterday. The Australian dollar was at $0.7124 after recently falling from above $0.72.

Oil prices were lower in the afternoon of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures down 0.49% to $90.96 per barrel. U.S. crude futures shed 0.32% to $89.59 per barrel.