Most Asian stock market indices were trading lower on Wednesday (26 October) with the Shanghai Composite down 0.50% at 3,116.31 as of 7.10am GMT. This followed Australia reporting economic data that suggested its central bank would not cut rates in its next policy meeting.
On Wednesday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said that the country's third quarter consumer price index (CPI) was up 0.7% on-quarter. This was better than the expected 0.5% gain. On-year, this had increased 1.3%, beating a consensus forecast of a 1.1% gain.
CPI is an index that measures changes in the price level of a basket of consumer goods and services purchased by households. The annual percentage change in a CPI is used as a measure of inflation.
Analysts said this better-than-expected reading, reduced chances of another rate cut by the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) in 2016. "The RBA will see today's pick up in quarterly inflation as a net positive from record low rates of 1.5 percent, so this pushes any concerns of further easing well back into 2017," Matt Simpson, market analyst at ThinkMarkets, was quoted as saying by CNBC.
Meanwhile, analysts also opined that the bearish trend in the Asian markets was amid an overnight decline in the Wall Street. The decline in Asia is "mainly due to the soft lead from Wall Street...Investors remain nervous given the U.S. election, (Federal Reserve) meetings, China property market etc," Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy at AMP Capital was quoted as saying by Reuters.
Indices in the region were trading as follows at 7.25am GMT:
|Hong Kong||Hang Seng Index||23,319.62||Down||1.04%|
Overnight (25 October), the FTSE 100 closed 0.45% higher at 7,017.64, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.30% at 18,169.27.
Among commodities, oil prices declined after data from the American Petroleum Institute showed an increase in crude inventory in the week ended 21 October. While WTI crude oil was trading lower by 1.08% at $49.42 (£40.55) a barrel, Brent crude was trading 0.93% lower at $50.32 a barrel as of 7.30am GMT.