Asia: Korean production index lower, New Zealand confidence up

Monday, 18. January 2016 22:41

With the U.S. markets closed for the Dr Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a national holiday, and the European markets day ending mostly with losses, Asian markets would wake up expecting clues as to how the economies have performed in late 2015. The prices of oil will also remain in focus of the commodity markets, with Iran coming back to markets.

The Producer Price Index decreased by 0.2%, month-on-month in December 2015, with the agricultural, forestry and marine products production up 1.7%, while the manufacturing industry products rate fell by 0.5%, according to the data published by the Bank of Korea (BoK). On an annual level, this represents a fall of 3.9%. The most dramatic slide was in the manufacturing industry products - down 6.8, while the services sector went up 1.3%. Monthly rate of inflation was negative, down 0.2%, according to the preliminary BoK report.

Meanwhile, the business confidence in New Zealand has rebounded in the last quarter of 2015. After a sharp drop of confidence in Q3, a net 13% of businesses now expect the economy to strengthen over next months, said the country’s Institute of Economic Research in its regular report published early on Tuesday local time.

The most important would be of the data on Chinese GDP in the fourth quarter of 2015, due early on Tuesday morning. The GDP report by the National Bureau of Statistics of China will come simultaneously with numbers on industrial production, retail sales, fixed investments, which would give deeper insight into state of the world's second largest economy. With a previous report for the third quarter, pointing towards 6.9% annual rise, and 1.8% quarterly, the economy of the People’s Republic is expected to have expanded slower than anytime in previous quarter of a century.

Hang Seng index will wait report from the Census and Statistics Department on the unemployment rate in Hong Kong, last time measured at 3.30%.

On Monday, the Asian markets closed in the red territory, a sentiment that’s prevailed after a relentless sell-off on Wall Street on Friday. However, trading was on a more solid foot than in most of session last week, as two main Chinese markets closed with gains with Shanghai composite rose 0.44%, while the Shenzhen composite jumped 1.90%. In Hong Kong, Hang Seng saw another day of losses, closing 1.45% lower. In Seoul, Kospi index lost 0.02%, and it was similar Down Under, where Sydney’s ASX slid 0.74%, according to market data. Japan’s Nikkei 225 recovered late in the day, after briefly falling 2.39% during the day, to close 1.12% lower.

European markets will be expecting new set of German economy numbers: from Destatis on consumer prices, and the survey of economic sentiment by the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW), expected Tuesday morning. The European markets have closed mostly with losses on Monday, with a high pressure on the banking for the non-performing loans.

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