ASIAN STOCKS UNDER PRESSURE AS INVESTORS SEEK SAFER HAVENS
Asian stocks came under pressure as investors sought safe havens, such as the US dollar, fearing that a resurgence in coronavirus cases and a lack of additional US fiscal stimulus would hobble the world economy.
US President Donald Trump’s offer to raise the size of a fiscal stimulus package to win the support of Republicans and Democrats helped narrow Wall Street losses, though many investors still believe a deal is unlikely before the Nov. 3 election, Suzann Barlyn reported for Reuters.
“There’s a bit of worry there and also at what we’re seeing in America and in Europe regarding the virus and how it seems to be taking hold pretty significantly again,” said Grant Williamson, investment adviser at Hamilton Hindin Greene in Christchurch, New Zealand.
Stocks struggled to make gains in early Asian trade with Australia's S&P/ASX 200 down 0.02% and Japan's Nikkei 225 futures adding just 0.06%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index futures rose 0.36%. E-mini futures for the S&P 500 rose 0.04%. Australia and New Zealand investors were likely to “take a breather” on Friday, especially after New Zealand equities climbed 6% during October, Williamson said. On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.07%, the S&P 500 0.15% and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.47%.