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Japan reporting a 7.4% on-year increase in November exports had no positive impact on the stock markets Reuters

Most Asian stock markets were trading lower on Monday (19 December) with the Shanghai Composite down 0.01% at 3,122.58 as of 5.12am GMT. This followed a continued bond selloff in China and Japan reporting good export numbers for November.

The world's second largest economy started witnessing a selloff in the country's bond market last week amid tightening of short-term credit by China's central bank. Also, there rumours that brokers were seeing a liquidity squeeze in the country, which resulted in the decline for China's 10-year bond futures.

In Japan, data from the country's ministry of finance showed that its export performance had improved in November. It had increased 7.4% on-year, amid good demand for semiconductors, ships and metals. While semiconductors exports saw a 24.5% on-year increase in November, exports of ships surged 42.1%. However, this failed to have any positive impact on the stock markets in the region.

The only stock market index in the region that bucked the bearish trend was Australia's S&P/ASX 200, which was primarily due to the country maintaining its AAA credit rating, despite a budget deficit.

Standard & Poor's said that the mid-year budget update would have zero impact on its credit rating. However, it added that this could be changed in a few months if the rating agency does not see much progress.

Indices in the region were trading as follows at 5.49am GMT:

Hong KongHang Seng Index21,850.70Down0.77%
JapanNikkei 22519,388.07Down0.07%
South KoreaKOSPI2,041.54Down0.03%
AustraliaS&P/ASX 2005,562.10Up0.53%

Last week (16 December), the FTSE 100 closed 0.18% higher at 7,011.64, while the S&P 500 Index closed 0.18% lower at 2,258.07.

Among commodities, oil prices were trading in the green amid expectations of a tighter crude supply in 2017 following the recent production cut decisions by both Opec and non-Opec nations. As of 12:40am EST, WTI crude oil was trading higher by 0.85% at $52.34 (£41.94) a barrel, while Brent crude was trading 0.63% higher at $55.56 a barrel.