Sep 29, 2020

Asian Markets Closing Report: ZTO Express jumps in Hong Kong debut; Asia-Pacific markets mixed as Covid-19 deaths top 1 million


Eustance Huang

SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific were mixed on Tuesday, as logistics firm ZTO Express soared in its Hong Kong debut. 

Shares of logistics provider ZTO Express surged in the opening minutes of the debut in Hong Kong on Tuesday, jumping about 10% from the offer price of 218 Hong Kong dollars ($28.13) per share. The stock later pared some gains but was still more than 8% higher, as of its final hour of trading. The firm is the latest U.S.-listed Chinese company to debut in the city.

Meanwhile, the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong dipped about 0.8%, as of its final hour of trading. Mainland Chinese stocks were higher, with the Shanghai composite up 0.21% to about 3,224.36 while the Shenzhen component added 1.095% to approximately 12,900.70.

In South Korea, the Kospi rose 0.86% to close at 2,327.89. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was flat on the day at 5,952.10.

Over in Japan, the Nikkei 225 advanced 0.12% to close at 23,539.10 while the Topix index dipped 0.23% to end its trading day at 1,658.10.

Overall, the MSCI Asia ex-Japan index was little changed.

In coronavirus developments, the global death toll from the pandemic crossed the 1 million mark, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. About half of the world’s Covid-19 fatalities were reported in just four countries — the U.S., Brazil, India and Mexico, according to Hopkins data.

Japan telco watch

Shares of Japan’s Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT) fell 2.85%, with the firm announcing Tuesday a buyout of its wireless unit, NTT Docomo, according to Reuters. Shares of NTT Docomo soared 15.78% on Tuesday.

The move by NTT could spark a period of mobile price cuts, as new Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga called on wireless carriers to reduce prices. Shares of NTT Docomo’s mobile peers, Softbank Corp and KDDI, both fell 4.14% each on Tuesday.

.N225Nikkei 225 IndexNIKKEI23539.1027.480.12
.HSIHang Seng IndexHSI23306.38-169.67-0.72
.AXJOS&P/ASX 200ASX 2005952.10-0.200.00
.KS11KOSPI IndexKOSPI2327.8919.810.86
.FTFCNBCACNBC 100 ASIA IDXCNBC 1009040.57-12.35-0.14

Currencies and oil

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 94.278 following an earlier low of 94.113.

The Japanese yen traded at 105.65 per dollar after touching an earlier high of 105.33 against the greenback. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7083 following levels below $0.705 seen yesterday.

Oil prices were lower in the afternoon of Asian trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures down 0.4% to $42.26 per barrel. U.S. crude futures shed 0.62% to $40.35 per barrel.

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