Chinese economic data releases ahead

SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific slipped in Wednesday morning trade following overnight losses on Wall Street as the S&P 500 fell deeper into bear market territory.

Investors in the region will also be looking ahead to the release of Chinese economic data expected later today.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan slipped fractionally in early trading while the Topix index dipped close to 0.1%. South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.17%.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 declined 0.29%. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.05% lower.

A slew of Chinese economic data, including industrial production and retail sales for May, is set to be out later on Wednesday.

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Overnight on Wall Street, the S&P 500 fell deeper into bear market territory, declining 0.38% to 3,735.48. The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 151.91 points, or 0.5%, to 30,364.83. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite outperformed, rising 0.18% to around 10,828.35.

The moves stateside came as U.S. Treasury yields rose again as investors anticipate more aggressive tightening policies from the Federal Reserve, which is set to announce its latest interest rate decision later Wednesday stateside.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury yield last stood at 3.4424% — down from 3.48%, an 11-year high it reached on Tuesday. The 2-year rate was at 3.391%. Yields move inversely to prices. The 2-year and 10-year Treasury yield curve briefly inverted earlier this week as investors position for potentially aggressive monetary policy tightening to tame inflation.

The yield curve inversion is closely monitored by traders and is often viewed as an indicator of potential recession ahead.

Currencies and oil

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 105.314 after a recent bounce from levels below 105.

The Japanese yen traded at 135.22 per dollar, weaker as compared with levels below 135 seen against the greenback yesterday. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.6889, struggling to recover after last week’s fall from levels above $0.72.

Oil prices were lower in the morning of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures down 0.34% to $120.76 per barrel. U.S. crude futures shed 0.22% to $118.67 per barrel.

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