Apple Supplier Stock in Asia; Oil prices

SINGAPORE — Stocks in Asia-Pacific were mixed on Friday morning as Wall Street stocks rallied overnight and oil prices fell.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was subdued, falling 0.23%.

Shares of Hong Kong-listed Russian aluminum producer Rusal bucked the trend and jumped more than 10% in early trading before paring gains to trade around 1.5% higher. The stock fell earlier this week after the company said on Monday it was assessing the impact of a ban announced Sunday by the Australian government on exports of alumina and aluminum ores to Russia.

Shares of Rusal in Moscow had jumped nearly 16% when markets resumed trading in Russia on Thursday after a month-long shutdown.

Shares of JD Logistics fell more than 10% in early trading. In a filing with the Hong Kong stock exchange in the morning, the company said it would raise 8.53 billion Hong Kong dollars ($1.09 billion) through a share sale. E-commerce giant subsidiary said the shares would be priced at HK$20.71 apiece.

Mainland China stocks were little changed: the Shanghai composite and the Shenzhen component traded just above the flatline.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 was slightly higher, while the Topix rose 0.14%. Japan released inflation data, showing its core consumer price index hit a two-year high in March, according to Reuters.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 remained in positive territory as it edged up 0.44%, with some gains among the miners. South Korean stocks rallied after an earlier decline and the Kospi rose 0.2%. Some tech stocks were down, with SK Hynix down 1.24%.

Japanese companies Toshiba and Fanuc, which rose 2.3% and 1.3% respectively, and Singaporean agricultural company Olam, which jumped nearly 4%, were among the top gainers in morning trade in Asia.

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Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.57%. Analysts at research firm Capital Economics and DBS Bank said on Friday they now expect Singapore’s central bank to tighten policy at its meeting next month after a major easing of restrictions Covid of the country on Thursday.

“Yesterday’s easing of virus restrictions in Singapore exceeded our expectations and now means that risks to our above-consensus growth forecast of 4.0% this year are on the upside,” said economist Alex Holmes. for emerging Asia within the company. “The measures are also likely to add to inflationary pressures, further increasing the chances that the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) will tighten policy when it meets next month.”

US stocks rallied overnight, led by chip stocks. The Dow Jones jumped 349.44 points, or 1%, to close at 34,707.94. The S&P 500 added 1.4% to 4,520.16 and the Nasdaq Composite rose 1.9% to 14,191.84.

Stocks have oscillated this week, alternating between rising and falling days. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq are on track to end the week higher.

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Currencies and oil

Oil prices were in focus and fell almost 2% overnight after a volatile session. In Asia trading on Friday, U.S. crude fell 0.15% to $112.17 a barrel and Brent rose 0.08% to $119.13.

“[International Energy Agency] members are looking to reduce their use of its crude,” said ANZ Research analysts Brian Martin and Daniel Hynes. They noted that IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol said the group was ready to release more oil from emergency stocks if needed.

Contributing to the oil slide, officials from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries also expressed unease to the EU over a proposed Russian oil ban, Reuters said citing OPEC sources.

In currencies, the U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 98.608, down from levels around 98.7 earlier.

The Japanese yen was trading at 121.82 to the dollar, firmer than before. The Australian dollar was at $0.7515 as it continued to surge from levels around $0.74 earlier in the week.

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