ASIAN SHARES PARE GAINS AS US-CHINA TENSIONS WORSEN
Asian shares pared gains on Wednesday, led by losses in Chinese stocks, after Beijing vowed retaliatory sanctions against the United States, while the euro rose to a four-month high on the prospect of stimulus ahead of a crucial EU summit, Swati Pandey and Pete Schroeder wrote for Reuters.
US President Donald Trump on Tuesday ordered an end to Hong Kong’s special status under US law to punish China for what he called “oppressive actions” against the former British colony, prompting a warning from China that it would retaliate.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was last up 0.14%, after rising over 1% earlier in the session.
Chinese shares were deep in red, with the blue-chip CSI300 index .CSI300 off 1% and Hong Kong's Hang Seng index .HSI down 0.6%. Japan's Nikkei .N225 and Australia's benchmark index remained upbeat though, and were up 1.4% and 1%, respectively. E-mini futures for the S&P 500 gave back some of their gains but were still up 0.7%. Overnight risk appetite was boosted by Moderna Inc.’s experimental vaccine for COVID-19 which showed it was safe and provoked immune responses in all 45 healthy volunteers in an early-stage study. On Tuesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose over 2%, while the S&P 500 .SPX gained 1.34% and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC climbed 0.94%.