By Yoshiaki Nohara
Asian stocks outside Japan fell after the Federal Reserve raised its estimates for interest rates. Japan’s Topix (TPX) index jumped toward a six-year high on a weaker yen.
Hyundai Motor Co. sank 7.6 percent after South Korea’s largest carmaker led a group that bid for real estate with an offer triple the property’s assessed value. Honda Motor Co., a Japanese carmaker that gets 47 percent of sales in North America, rose 2.7 percent. Arrium Ltd. plunged 27 percent in Sydney after raising capital. Sony Corp. dropped 8.1 percent as the Japanese consumer-electronics maker widened its net loss forecast and said it will suspend an annual dividend.
The MSCI Asia Pacific excluding Japan Index lost 0.9 percent to 490.73 as of 11:54 a.m. in Hong Kong. The Topix rose 1.1 percent as the yen reached a six-year low against the dollar, boosting the earnings outlook for exporters. The Fed raised by 25 basis points its median estimate for where the federal funds rate will be by the end of 2015, while maintaining a commitment to keep rates near zero for a “considerable time” after bond purchases are completed.
“A weaker yen is a plus for Japanese stocks, while higher bond yields in the U.S. can stoke concern money will be taken away from emerging markets in Asia,” said Masaaki Yamaguchi, equity market strategist at Nomura Holdings Inc., Japan’s biggest brokerage by market value. “But I don’t think we will see a chaotic selloff because China has tried to stabilize the situation with policy tools.”
Treasuries declined and U.S. stocks gave up early gains yesterday as investors focused on an increase in the Fed’s interest-rate projections for next year. Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index were little changed today after the underlying equity gauge rose 0.1 percent yesterday.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index (MXAP), which includes Japan, fell 0.4 percent, pushed down by the yen’s slump, which cuts the value of Japanese shares in the dollar-denominated measure.
South Korea’s Kospi index declined 0.7 percent and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index slipped 0.4 percent. New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index rose 0.2 percent as a report showed the nation’s economy expanded 0.7 percent in the second quarter from the previous three months, exceeding the 0.6 percent median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg.
Hong Kong’s benchmark Hang Seng Index declined 0.7 percent and the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland stocks traded in the city sank 0.8 percent. New home prices dropped in all but two Chinese cities tracked by the government, the National Bureau of Statistics said in a statement today. The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.4 percent.
Taiwan’s Taiex index added 0.3 percent and Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.2 percent. India’s S&P BSE Sensex Index lost 0.3 percent.
Asian stocks rose yesterday for the first time in 10 days as China’s central bank joined its European counterpart in boosting liquidity. The move by the People’s Bank of China to provide 500 billion yuan ($81 billion) of three-month funds to the nation’s five largest banks will help overcome any pre-holiday cash crunch, though is unlikely to boost gross domestic product, according to economists at banks including Barclays Plc.
Hyundai Motor sank 7.6 percent to 201,500 won after leading a group that outbid Samsung Electronics Co. for real estate in Seoul with a 10.55 trillion won ($10 billion) offer. The group, which includes affiliates Kia Motors Corp. and Hyundai Mobis Co., won the bid for the 79,342-square-meter site, said the seller, Korea Electric Power Corp..
Kia slid 7.8 percent to 54,400 won and Hyundai Mobis lost 5.7 percent to 263,000 won. Korea Electric rose 7.5 percent to 47,150 won, poised for the highest close since 2007.
Japanese exporters gained with Honda rising 2.7 percent to 3,737 yen. Komatsu Ltd., a construction machinery maker that gets about 30 percent of its revenue in the Americas, added 2.3 percent to 2,515 yen.
Among stocks that fell, Arrium sank 27 percent to 41.5 Australian cents, heading for a record drop, after raising A$465 million ($417 million) in capital.
Sony plunged 8.1 percent to 1,951.5 yen after saying yesterday it would post a net loss of 230 billion yen ($2.1 billion) this fiscal year because it was writing down the value of its faltering smartphone business.
The Asia-Pacific gauge traded at 13.6 times estimated earnings as of yesterday compared with 16.7 for the S&P 500 and 15.5 for the Stoxx Europe 600 Index, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
To contact the reporter on this story: Yoshiaki Nohara in Tokyo at [email protected]
To contact the editors responsible for this story: Sarah McDonald at [email protected] John McCluskey