Taiwan shares slumped 2%, guided by falls
in tech stocks on Wall Street overnight, and led losses among
Asian equities on Tuesday as the region continued to reel from
rapidly climbing COVID-19 cases.
A raft of manufacturing data in emerging Asia this week
pointed to a slower pace of economic recovery, with investors
further worried by the modest vaccination rate in the face of an
explosion in coronavirus cases and a creaky healthcare system.
In a divergence from world’s developed markets which are
faring better than Asia as their economies slowly reopen, Asian
equities in South Korea, Philippine and Indonesia
eased between 0.2% to 0.3%.
Holidays in major financial markets of China and Japan
dampened investor activity generally.
“Sentiment across Asia remains subdued as new COVID-19 waves
are hitting India and some Southeast Asian countries,
threatening millions of lives and an economic recovery in the
region,” said DailyFX strategist Margaret Yang.
“New COVID-19 strains appear to be more contagious and
deadly, rendering developing countries more vulnerable due to a
lack of vaccines and healthcare resources.”
India’s official tally of coronavirus infections surged past
20 million and its shares fell 0.3%.
Taiwan’s bourse saw its worst day in over
eight-months as it tracked an overnight drop in U.S. tech
stocks, compounded by fears over a recent uptick in domestic
COVID-19 infections linked to China Airlines.
Singapore shares extended losses, while the local
dollar eased 0.3% after the latest COVID-19 cluster over
the weekend sparked concern.
Meanwhile, the Indonesian rupiah edged up 0.2% a day
before first-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) data was due.
Southeast Asia’s largest economy is expected to have contraction
0.74% for the period.
Thailand’s financial markets were shut due to a holiday.
** Indonesian 10-year benchmark yields are up
0.3 basis points at 6.484%
** S. Korean won recovers slightly from previous
session’s 1% drop
** Top losers on the Singapore STI include:
Capitaland Ltd down 2.5% and Jardine Matheson Holdings
Ltd down 1.2%
Asia stock indexes and currencies at 0428 GMT
COUNTRY FX RIC FX DAILY FX YTD % INDEX STOCKS STOCKS
% DAILY % YTD %
Japan -0.18 -5.51 0.00 4.99
India 0.00 -1.15 -0.01 4.66
Indonesia +0.20 -2.61 -0.33 -0.77
Malaysia -0.17 -2.19 0.37 -1.88
Philippines -0.11 -0.09 -0.15 -10.93
S.Korea +0.29 -3.08 -0.24 8.56
Singapore -0.19 -0.82 -0.18 11.79
Taiwan +0.20 +2.01 -1.82 14.77
(Reporting by Anushka Trivedi in Bengaluru; Editing by Simon