Asian Markets Round-up June 16
Most Asian bourses end lower on 16 June, ahead of the US Fed's FOMC meetingReuters

Asian markets outside India finished lower on 16 June with the upcoming two-day US Federal Reserve FOMC meeting draining risk appetite.

The Japanese Nikkei finished 0.64%, or 129.85 points, lower at 20,257.94.

The Shanghai Composite finished 3.47%, or 175.56 points, lower at 4,887.43.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng finished 1.10%, or 295.11 points, lower at 26,566.70.

Australia's S&P/ASX 200 finished 0.05%, or 3.00 points, lower at 5,535.80.

South Korea's Kospi Composite finished 0.67%, or 13.60 points, lower at 2,028.72.

India's S&P BSE Sensex finished 0.38%, or 99.96 points, higher at 26,686.51.

The Fed's FOMC will meet on 16-17 June and Fed boss Janet Yellen could reiterate, in her press conference, that rates will rise this year.

Nordea Bank said in a note to clients: "...In any event, it will not be current inflation that triggers a Fed rate hike but rather the tightness of the labour market and its implications for future inflation risks."

Market movements

The Shanghai Composite was pulled down by concerns surrounding the recent clampdown on margin financing and a fresh wave of initial public offerings (IPOs).

The Hang Seng finished at its lowest level since 8 April.

Hong Kong will vote on a China-backed electoral reform package later this week and Hong Kong's legislature is to begin debate on the said package on 17 June.

Capital Economics said in a note to clients: "Hong Kong has both the highest life expectancy and the lowest birth rate in the world. One consequence is that Hong Kong's working age population is set to decline by more than that of any other territory over the next 30 years, which would erode the productive potential of the economy."

The ASX finished a tad lower even after minutes from the Reserve Bank of Australia's (RBA) previous policy meeting showed the central bank reiterating its view that monetary policy should remain accommodative. The RBA left interest rates at a record low 2% at its 2 June meeting.

Elsewhere, the Sensex bounced back after falling over 200 points in intra-day trade.

Government data showed that India's trade deficit narrowed to a three-month low in May, thanks to lower gold imports. But weak global demand and persistent domestic bottlenecks led to a sixth successive annual fall in merchandise exports. Exports account for about 20% of India's $2tn economy.

Capital Economics said in a note: "India's trade data for May are a mixed bag, with the trade deficit narrowing despite another contraction in export growth. The big picture, however, is that India's external position is far less a source of vulnerability now than in recent years."

Company stocks

In Tokyo, industrial robots maker Fanuc lost 1.81%.

In Shanghai, China Telecom lost 3.48%.

In Hong Kong, railway equipment makers CRRC and Zhuzhou CSR Times Electric tumbled 10.39% and 7.15%. Citic Telecom fell 6.02%.

In Sydney, Insurance Australia Group jumped 4.31% on news that Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway bought a 3.7% stake in the insurer for A$500m ($388m).

Westpac Banking added 1.83%.

In Seoul, shipbuilder Samsung Heavy Industries lost 4.30% while rival Hyundai Heavy lost 2.98%.

LG Electronics lost 2.71% while KB Financial Group lost 2.23%.

In Mumbai, Jet Airways surged 14.40%.