Asian share markets pared early losses on Monday as data confirmed China’s economy had bounced back last quarter as factory output jumped, helping offset recent disappointing news on U.S. consumer spending.
Chinese blue chips edged up 0.4% after the economy was reported to have grown 6.5% in the fourth quarter, a year earlier, topping forecasts of 6.1%.
Industrial production for December also beat estimates, though retail sales missed the mark.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan trimmed losses and were off 0.2%, having hit a string of record peaks in recent weeks. Japan’s Nikkei slipped 0.8% and away from a 30-year high.
The euro had retreated to $1.2074, from its January peak at $1.2349, while the dollar held steady on the yen at 103.80 and well above the recent low at 102.57.
The Canadian dollar eased to $1.2773 per dollar after Reuters reported Biden planned to revoke the permit for the Keystone XL oil pipeline.
Biden’s pick for Treasury Secretary, Janet Yellen, is expected to rule out seeking a weaker dollar when testifying on Capital Hill on Tuesday, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Gold prices were undermined by the bounce in the dollar leaving the metal down at $1,824 an ounce, compared to its January top of $1,959.
Mainland Chinese stocks were up by the early morning. The Shanghai Composite was up by 0.70% to 3,591.33. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was up about 0.22% to 28,634.25.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei average. Nikkei 225 is trading down 1.09 per cent at 28,206.03 on Monday, while the broader TOPIX 100 fell 0.55 per cent to 1,204.08. South Korea’s Kospi was down by 2.58% to 3007.32.