Tokyo, Japan (BBN)– Japanese shares have started the week lower, as investors remain disappointed by the central bank’s stimulus last Friday, which was not as bold as many analysts had expected.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index was down 1.4 per cent at 16,347.26 in early trading, reports BBC.
In total, just 18 stocks were positive, with 206 stocks falling.
On Friday, The Bank of Japan kept rates on hold, and only modestly expanded its economic stimulus aimed at boosting the country’s flagging economy.
Official data from China on Monday showed manufacturing activity had slowed slightly in July. The Purchasing Managers’ Index, which tracks activities at Chinese factories, showed a 49.9 reading for July, compared with 50 in June.
A reading above 50 indicates an expansion, while anything below that signals a contraction. Markets in China are shut on Monday for a public holiday.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index opened up 0.91 per cent, or 200 points, higher at 22,082.24.
In South Korea, the Kospi edged up 0.68 per cent at the start of trade to 2,029.89.
And over in Australia, the benchmark ASX 200 share index inched 0.67 per cent higher to 5,599.90 points.
All eyes on Australia
The Reserve Bank of Australia, the country’s central bank, will hold its monthly interest rate meeting on Tuesday.
The central bank’s current cash rate of 1.75 per cent is a record low. But many economists are expecting it to lower rates further, taking the cash rate to 1.5 per cent.
Later in the week, investors will be looking out for key US jobs data due on Friday for July for another gauge on the state of the world’s largest economy.