Monday Morning Briefing: Asian Shares Mixed On U.S. Data, Missile Test
Asian shares were mixed on Monday as tepid U.S. economic growth data and another missile test by North Korea weighed on investor sentiment.
Japanese stocks dropped as the yen strengthened against the dollar while oil halted gains on rising U.S. crude stockpiles.
SGX Nifty futures indicate a positive start for Indian equities after the NSE Nifty index snapped four-day gaining streak on Friday.
Missile Test, Cyber Attack
North Korea fired a ballistic missile early on Sunday, its seventh such test this year, just days after South Korea appointed a new president.
The weekend cyber attack that crippled computers across over 150 countries also kept investors on the edge. While the hackers have been contained for now, experts have warned of a possibility of more IT systems falling prey, as offices open on Monday.
The hackers used the tool to encrypt files within affected computers, making them inaccessible, and demanded ransom -- typically $300 in bitcoin.
Weak U.S. Data
Meanwhile weak U.S. economic data also curbed risk appetite. Consumer prices rebounded last month, though at a slower pace than expected, while retail sales advanced after an unexpected drop in March.
The data also raised questions about whether the Federal Reserve could maintain its hawkish outlook for interest rates this year.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 0.11 percent to end at 20,896.61 points while the S&P 500 lost 0.15 percent to 2,390.9, dragged down by financial and industrial stocks.
Oil Halts Rally
Oil halted gains near $48 a barrel after crude production in the U.S. climbed for a 17th week, countering a report that Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and its allies had reached agreement on production cuts.
The OPEC and other producers reached a preliminary deal to extend output cuts, Bloomberg reported citing state-run Kuwait News Agency on Sunday.
U.S. drillers added nine rigs targeting crude bringing the total to 712, the most since April 2015, Baker Hughes Inc. said on Friday.
The SGX Nifty Index rose 0.3 percent to 9,445 as of 06:40 a.m., indicating a positive start to the Indian markets.
Indian shares retreated from record highs as investors booked profits in recent outperformers such as Zee Entertainment.
Shares of Idea Cellular Ltd. will be in focus on Monday, after the telecom operator reported a loss for the second straight quarter.