Trading Room home page

Asia shares mixed after profit taking

Market watch top headlines

Australian reports

World reports

Stocks to watch

FMG, AGO, BHP, RIO, JBH, HVN, WOW, WES, MYR, PMV, PDN, UGL, LEI,

HONG KONG, Feb 4 AFP

February 04 2013, 10:47PM

Asian markets have closed mixed as late profit-taking offset a rally on Wall Street that was fuelled by upbeat jobs data out of the US.

The euro and dollar were mixed against the yen on Monday after racking up healthy gains in New York on Friday.

Tokyo closed 0.62 per cent higher, adding 69.01 points to a 33-month high of 11,260.35, while Seoul slipped 0.23 per cent, or 4.58 points, to 1,953.21, and Sydney fell 0.28 per cent, or 13.6 points, to 4,907.5.

Hong Kong fell 0.16 per cent as dealers cashed in profits after the index spent most of the day in positive territory and around 21-month highs. The Hang Seng Index fell 36.83 points to end at 23,685.01, while Shanghai rose 0.38 per cent, or 9.13 points, to 2,428.15.

US traders sent the Dow to a more than five-year high on Friday on the back of the latest jobs data.

The labour department report showed employers added 157,000 jobs in January, fewer than expected, and the jobless rate inched up to 7.9 per cent.

However, revised data for all of 2012 showed net job growth at an average of 181,000 a month, up from a prior estimate of 153,000.

The Dow rallied 1.08 per cent to 14,009.79, above 14,000 points for the first time since October 2007. The index is just shy of the record high 14,164.53 seen on October 9, 2007.

The broad-based S&P 500 added 1.01 per cent and the Nasdaq jumped 1.18 per cent.

"The economic momentum in the US is quite good," Khiem Do, head of Asian multi-asset at Baring Asset Management in Hong Kong, told Dow Jones Newswires.

"The US is basking in good news at the moment because the debt negotiations have kicked the can down the road," he added, referring to a delay until May to negotiations on raising the country's debt ceiling.

And UniCredit's Harm Bandholz in the US said the updates to the 2012 data "highlight even more how remarkably resilient the US labour market has been over the last two quarters".

The jobs figures sent the US dollar and euro higher against the yen on Friday, and the units were mixed in early European trade on Monday.

The dollar bought Y92.90 against Y92.80 yen in New York late on Friday, while the euro was at Y126.35 yen and $US1.3600, compared with Y126.60 yen and $US1.3637.

Eyes will turn later in the week to China, which is due to release key data on inflation and trade ahead of the Chinese New Year public holiday.

Australia's central bank will announce the outcome of its policy setting meeting, with analysts expecting it to keep interest rates on hold.

Oil prices fell, with New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in March, dropping 49 cents to $US97.28 a barrel while Brent North Sea crude for March also shed 50 cents to $US116.26.

Gold was at $US1,665.40 at 1045 GMT (2145 AEDT) compared with $1,665.35 late Friday.

In other markets:

- Singapore's Straits Times Index closed up 0.19 per cent, or 6.23 points, to 3,297.37.

United Overseas Bank gained 2.12 per cent to Sg$19.27 and Singapore Airlines advanced 1.80 per cent to Sg$11.30.

- Kuala Lumpur shares gained seven points, or 0.43 per cent, to close at 1,634.55.

IHH Healthcare inched up 0.3 per cent to 3.30 ringgit, while Malayan Banking added 1.0 per cent to 8.97. AirAsia fell 1.1 per cent to 2.75 ringgit.

- Jakarta ended up 8.93 points, or 0.2 per cent, at 4490,565.

Carmaker Astra International rose rose 2.01 per cent to 7,600 rupiah, food manufacturer Indofood Sukses Makmur jumped 1.68 per cent to 6,050 rupiah, and Telekomunikasi Indonesia increased 0.52 per cent to 9,700 rupiah.

- Bangkok added 0.48 per cent or 7.15 points to 1,506.37.

Telecoms company True Corp. lost 2.94 per cent to 6.60 baht, while Kiatnakin Bank jumped 7.21 per cent to 55.75 baht.

- Taipei rose 0.86 per cent, or 67.19 points, to 7,923.16.

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co was 1.48 per cent higher at Tw$103.0 while Fubon Financial Holding rallied 3.56 per cent to Tw$39.3.

- Mumbai's Sensex index slid 0.15 per cent, or 30.0 points, to 19,751.19, its third straight day of declines, on weak earnings data from local firms.

India's engineering giant Bharat Heavy Electricals fell 2.73 per cent to 219.2 rupees while commercial bank State Bank of India fell 2.41 per cent to 2,351.85.

- Manila rose 1.86 per cent, or 117.37 points, to 6,435.98, a new record.

Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co added 2.13 per cent to 2,880 pesos and Ayala Corp gained 4.8 per cent to 574 pesos.

- Wellington ended flat, edging up 0.47 points to 4,246,40.

Air New Zealand was up 2.38 per cent at NZ$1.29 and Fletcher Building slipped 2.23 per cent to NZ$9.19.