In mainland China, stocks rose on the day following an earlier slip. The Shanghai composite gained 0.25% to 2,815.80, while the Shenzhen component added 0.48% to 9,009.68 and the Shenzhen composite advanced 0.535% to 1,517.07. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index also rose 0.72%, as of its final hour of trading.
Elsewhere, however, stocks largely saw losses.
In Japan, the Nikkei 225 fell 1.21% to close at 20,405.65, while the Topix index dropped 1.04% to end its trading day at 1,483.85. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 tumbled 2.85% to close at 6,408.10, as data on Thursday showed the jobless rate unchanged despite employment numbers in the country soaring past expectations in July.
The MSCI Asia ex-Japan index shed 0.53% overall.
Markets in South Korea and India were closed on Thursday for holidays.
Treasury yield curve inversion
The yield between the 10 and 2 year Treasury note hovered around the inversion mark during the afternoon of Asian trading hours, with the yield on the 10-year Treasury note last at 1.5877%, as compared to the 2-year rate at 1.5809%. The 30 year Treasury bond also touched fresh historic lows on Thursday.
“We shouldn’t ignore that this historically reliable indicator of the economy is telling us a recession may be looming. But markets have changed significantly in the last decade and yield curve inversion is not the harbinger it once was,” Kerry Craig, global market strategist at J.P. Morgan Asset Management, wrote in a note.
“Yield curve inversion is flashing a warning sign – investors should check their portfolios are resilient. But it’s not a reason to panic or to lean into the sell-off,” Craig said. “The market corrections can also offer fresh opportunities to pick up equities at more reasonable valuations.”
Bank shares decline
It was the sixth consecutive session where the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) fixed the midpoint at a level weaker than the psychologically important 7-yuan-per-dollar mark.
The onshore Chinese yuan last traded at 7.0249 against the greenback, while its offshore counterpart changed hands at 7.0388 per dollar.
Asia-Pacific Market Indexes Chart
|NIKKEI||Nikkei 225 Index||NIKKEI||20405.65||-249.48||-1.21|
|HSI||Hang Seng Index||HSI||25495.46||193.18||0.76|
|ASX 200||S&P/ASX 200||ASX 200||6408.10||-187.80||-2.85|
|CNBC 100||CNBC 100 ASIA IDX||CNBC 100||7594.60||-54.70||-0.72|
Currencies and oil
The Japanese yen, widely viewed as a safe-haven currency, traded at 106.19 after seeing an earlier high of 105.71. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.6777 after touching an earlier low of $0.6743.
Oil prices were mixed in the afternoon of Asian trading hours after seeing sharp losses on Wednesday. International benchmark Brent crude futures declined 0.27% to $59.32 per barrel, while U.S. crude futures rose slightly to $55.26 per barrel.
— CNBC’s Yun Li contributed to this report.