Asia, Australia Slides, Singapore Inflation Soars

Asia-Pacific shares fell on Friday as investors continue to weigh the U.S. Federal Reserve’s aggressive stance.

Markets in Japan were shuttered for holiday.

The Japanese yen traded at 142.33 against the greenback in Asia’s morning the day after Japanese authorities said they intervened in the currency market for the first time since 1998.

The yen strengthened to 140-levels before heading back to 142-levels.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index fell 214.68 points, or 1.2%, to 17,933.27.

Singapore’s consumer price index rose more than expected. Markets ion that country extended losses after the announcement.

Singapore’s headline inflation figure for August jumped more than expected from a year ago to 7.5%, the fastest pace of increase since 2008. The print is higher than analysts’ predictions of 7.2%.

Core inflation, which is closely watched by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, rose 5.1%, slightly above than the expected 5%.

Australia’s flash manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) rose slightly to 53.9 in September from 53.8 in August, according to data from S&P Global.

The flash services PMI ticked higher to 50.4 in September, compared with 50.2 in August.

CHINA

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 lost 13.32 points, or 0.3%, to 3,856.02.

Nomura downgraded its forecast for China’s 2023 annual growth to 4.3% from 5.1%.

Analysts cited a potentially prolonged COVID-zero policy or a spike in the nation’s infections after a possible reopening in March.

In other markets

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index dropped 35.97 points, or 1.1%, to 3,227.10.

In Korea, the Kospi index retreated 42.31 points, or 1.8%, to 2,290.

In Taiwan, the Taiex collapsed 166.25 points, or 1.2%, to 14,118.38

In New Zealand, the NZX sank 83.5 points, or 0.7%, to 11,434.82.

In Australia, the ASX 200 gave back 125.49 points, or 1.9%, to 6,574.73.