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Asian stocks follow Wall Street drop after US jobs report


By JOE McDONALD, AP Business Writer

BEIJING (AP) — Asian stock markets fell on Monday after Wall Street ended lower last week and China tightened virus controls.

Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong and South Korea fell. Oil prices rose more than $1 a barrel while the euro edged lower.

Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index ended down 1.1% on Friday after U.S. government data showed a slowdown in hiring in August. The number of jobs added was still large enough that forecasters said the Federal Reserve may see it as evidence that more interest rate hikes are needed to bring down inflation, which is at its highest level in recent history. four decades.

Asian trading could be “muted to lower” after Wall Street’s “failed attempt” to rebound from the jobs report, IG’s Yeap Jun Rong said in a report.

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The Shanghai Composite Index fell less than 0.1% to 3,185.29 after the Chinese government tightened controls on movement in the southern business hub of Shenzhen following virus outbreaks.

The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo fell 0.1% to 27,610.75 while the Hang Seng in Hong Kong fell 1.8% to 19,105.24.

Seoul’s Kospi lost 0.1% to 2,406.58 while Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 added 0.1% to 6,837.50.

New Zealand fell while Singapore and Indonesia advanced.

Traders are eyeing the Fed with concern after Chairman Jerome Powell said on Aug. 26 that interest rates needed to stay high to quell upward price pressure. That dashed hopes that the Fed might back down on signs of slowing US economic activity.

The Fed has raised interest rates four times this year, twice by 0.75 percentage points, or triple its usual margin.

Central banks in Europe and Asia also hiked rates, stoking fears of derailing global economic growth.

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average also fell 1.1% on Friday after the Labor Department announced that the U.S. economy added 315,000 jobs in August. That was sharply down from July’s 526,000, but average hourly earnings also jumped an unusually wide margin of 5.2% from a year earlier.

Forecasters warned that strong wage gains could bolster the Fed’s belief that more aggressive rate hikes are needed.

The Nasdaq composite lost 1.3%.

The US market gave up much of the gains made in July and August when traders hoped the Fed might relax.

Traders are expecting another 0.75 percentage point rate hike at this month’s Fed meeting, according to CME Group.

Also on Friday, Russian energy giant Gazprom announced that the suspension of gas supplies through the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline to Germany could be extended. The company announced last Wednesday that the gas flow would be stopped for three days due to urgent maintenance work.

In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude gained $1.48 to $88.35 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 26 cents to $86.87 on Friday. Brent crude, the price basis for international oil trade, added $1.59 to $94.61 a barrel in London. It advanced 66 cents the previous session to $93.02.

The dollar rose to 140.28 yen from 140.13 yen on Friday. The euro fell from 99.64 cents to 99.18 cents.

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