Asian shares mixed after Japan inflation slows

GMT 05:07 2015 Friday ,30 January

Arab Today, arab today Asian shares mixed after Japan inflation slows

Tokyo Stock Exchange (L)
Hong Kong - AFP

Asian stock markets were mixed in early trading Friday, with Tokyo's main index rising after Japanese data showed inflation slowed in December but industrial output rebounded.
Tokyo's gains were in line with a broad overnight rally on Wall Street, after the Federal Reserve signalled that growth and job creation in the world's top economy remained robust and corporate earnings were generally solid.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index on the Tokyo Stock Exchange rose 0.63 percent in morning trade, but the Shanghai Composite index fell 0.59 percent and Hong Kong turned flat after rising at the open.
Sydney gained 0.84 percent while Seoul was flat.
Japanese government data released Friday showed that core consumer inflation in the world's third largest economy slowed for a fifth month in December to 2.5 percent year-on-year, down from 2.7 percent in November, on the back of plunging oil prices and weaker consumer spending.
Adjusted for a sales tax increase, the rate rose just 0.5 percent, well short of the Bank of Japan's 2.0 percent inflation goal.
However, analysts said that while driving down prices, lower energy costs could help to shore up Japanese growth.
"There's a chance the inflation rate will turn negative in April, but for an energy importer like Japan, the drop in oil will act like a broad tax cut in supporting growth," Ryutaro Kono, chief Japan economist at BNP Paribas in Tokyo, told Bloomberg News.
Japan's industrial output rebounded with a 1.0 percent increase on-month in December, official data showed, reversing a surprise fall in November, but missed expectations of a higher rise.
Benchmark US indices rallied on Thursday after two days of falls, following generally robust corporate earnings and an uptick in oil prices.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.31 percent, the broad-based S&P 500 added 0.95 percent, and the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index gained 0.98 percent.
Oil prices were mixed in Asian trade -- a day after they plunged to their lowest level in nearly six years, sparking deflationary fears.
US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for March delivery was up two cents to $44.55 a barrel in mid-morning Asian trade, after a volatile session the day before that saw the contract plunge below $44 for the first time since March 2009.
Brent crude for March was down 14 cents at $48.99 a barrel.
The dollar was at $1.1331 against the euro, from $1.1289 in US trading and at 117.97 yen from 117.72 yen.
The euro fetched 133.68 yen, from 132.90 yen.
Gold fetched 1,260.00, against $1,265.97 on Thursday.


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