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China Down, Leading Losses in Asia

Asia-Pacific markets were lower on Friday as Japan’s core inflation for March came in at 3.1%, unchanged from February, data from the Statistics Bureau showed.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 dropped 93.2 points, or 0.3%, to 28,564.37.

This is the second straight month that core inflation has come in lower than January’s core inflation figure of 4.2%, the highest since 1981.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index tumbled 321.34 points, or 1.6%, to 20,075.73.


Mainland Chinese markets led losses in the region.

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 subtracted 80.45 points, or 2%, to 4,032.57.

BofA Global Research has raised its forecast for China’s 2023 outlook to 6.3%, up from its previous forecast of 5.5%.

This comes after China beat expectations and reported a first quarter gross domestic product growth of 4.5% earlier this week

In a note, BofA analysts said that it expects private consumption to further expand into investment over the next two quarters, pointing out that “new credit cycle has kicked off.”

This will fuel investment growth more than consumption and lift cyclical momentum in China, the analysts wrote.

Earlier this week, J.P.Morgan, Citigroup also raised their full-year GDP growth forecast for China to 6.4% and 6.1% respectively.

In other markets

In Singapore, the Straits Times forged higher 8.41 points, or 0.3%, to 3,321.82.

In Korea, the Kospi flopped 80.45 points, or 2%, to 2,544.40.

In Taiwan, the Taiex Index faltered 104.53 points, or 0.7%, to 15,602.99.

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 picked up 47.82 points, or 0.4%, to 11,927.50.

In Australia, the ASX 200 dumped 31.81 points, or 0.4%, to 7,330.38.