Tokyo, Japan (BBN)-Shares in Asia were mostly lacklustre on Thursday as investors continued to worry about a possible rate rise in the US and an ongoing slowdown in China.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 index was flat, down 0.02 per cent at 19,687.01 despite some better-than expected economic numbers, reports BBC.
Japan’s core machinery orders rose by 7.5 per cent in September from a month earlier- the first rise in four months.
Machinery orders are seen as an indicator of company spending.
On a year on year basis, the country’s machinery orders fell 1.7 per cent in September compared to forecasts for a drop of about 4 per cent.
Analysts said the numbers were better than expected but that they still reflected the ongoing slowdown in China, one of Japan’s most important trading partners.
In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 index recovered earlier losses by mid morning and edged up 0.02 per cent at 5,123.40.
Investors will be watching the index through the day after job numbers released for October showed the country’s unemployment number falling to 5.9 per cent from 6.2 per cent a month earlier.
Analysts said the numbers were strong and would be likely to give a boost to investor sentiment.
South Korea’s benchmark Kospi index was flat, down just 0.08 per cent at 1,995.59 in mid morning trade after the Bank of Korea kept its interest rate on hold.
Among other businesses and government offices, the stock market opened an hour later than usual on Thursday as the country marked students sitting their all-important college entrance test.
In China, markets were mixed, with the Shanghai Composite down 0.74 per cent at 3,623.35 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng benchmark index up 0.69 per cent at 22,506.76.