ASIAN STOCKS TALKING POINTS:
- Asian stocks were mostly lower Friday
- Risk aversion slipped on news that the US had backed off from talks with North Korea
- However the hermit kingdom said it was still open to a meeting
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Most Asia Pacific markets were slightly lower Friday as risk aversion waxed and waned.
The surprise cancellation of a nuclear summit planned between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has put the Korean peninsula’s problems back in focus. North Korea has reportedly said it remains open to talks, leaving markets to watch the wires for futher headlines.
South Korean and Japanese automakers traded lower on Thursday’s news that the US Department of Commerce said it had begun an investigation into automobile imports on national security grounds. The Nikkei 225 had clawed into the green by a tiny 0.07% by the middle of the Tokyo afternoon, but all other indexes were lower if only by similarly miniscule amounts.
The US Dollar made gains on the Japanese Yen as investors considered Pyongyang’s position. There was little economic data to speak of through the session. Tokyo’s Consumer Price Index underwhelmed once more, but markets were too busy elsewhere to take much notice.
The Australian Dollar has broken above its long-dominant downtrend but is now stuck in a broad trading range which has just seen another upside test fail.
Gold prices slipped a little but held up above the psychologically key $1,300/ounce level.
Still to come Friday is the closely watched Germany Ifo business survey, and another look at official UK Gross Domestic Product data for the year’s first quarter. US durable goods orders are coming up too, as is the University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment snapshot.
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— Written by David Cottle, DailyFX Research
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