Asia Markets Mixed As China Reopens And On US Jobs

Asian markets were mixed on Monday as China reopened and despite stocks in the US, which headed lower after US jobs figures were released.

Asia markets mixed as China reopens

Friday’s much-anticipated jobs figures showed unemployment fell to 5.1% last month, the lowest since April 2008.

The jobs report is the last before the US Federal Reserve meets later this month to decide whether to increase interest rates.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei opened lower on Monday, down 0.65% at 17,676.90.

By mid-morning trade, however, it was flat at 0.05% and 17,782.90 points.

Economist Angus Nicholson from IG Markets said in a note that trading in Asia on Monday would be driven by two main factors.

“The delayed response to Friday’s non-farm payrolls number out of the US and the reopening of the Chinese stocks markets after a four-day break,” he said.

“Both of these factors are likely to spur further selling in Asian markets today, with the outcome of the [mainland] Chinese market reopening being the greater cause for concern.”

In early trade, the benchmark Shanghai composite index opened flat but was up 1.49% at 3,207.97 points moments afterwards.

It continued to trade erratically and was up just 0.7% about an hour after opening at 3,162.49.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was also up 0.44% in early trade, but had slipped into negative territory later, down 0.37% at 20,755.82.

The market volatility in China came in line with the country’s National Bureau of Statistics revising its annual economic growth rate in 2014 to 7.3% down from 7.4%.

In Australia the S&P/ASX 200 was down 0.76% at 5,002.40 points, while South Korea’s Kospi benchmark index was down 0.03% at 1,885.30 points, after closing down 1.5% on Friday.

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