Asia-Pacific stocks mixed as investors watch oil prices

SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific traded mixed on Tuesday morning as investors monitored oil prices.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 slipped 0.64% while the Topix index shed 0.53%. South Korea’s Kospi also declined 1.15%.

Australian stocks beat the trend, with the S&P/ASX 200 rising 0.14%.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.25% lower.

Oil moves

Oil prices slipped in the morning of Asia trading hours, taking a pause following a recent surge above $80. International benchmark Brent crude futures dipped 0.39% to $83.32 per barrel while U.S. crude futures shed 0.34% to $80.25 per barrel.

“The rise in energy prices is fuelling concerns that the transitory lift in inflation seen in the wake of the pandemic may prove to be longer lasting,” Tapas Strickland, an economist at National Australia Bank, wrote in a Tuesday note.

The recent jump in oil prices comes as a rebound in global demand contributed to power shortages in major economies such as China. Last week, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies — a group collectively referred to as OPEC+ — also opted against a supply boost, further fueling the oil price rally.

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Overnight stateside, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 250.19 points to 34,496.06 while the S&P 500 slipped 0.69% to 4,361.19. The Nasdaq Composite shed 0.64% to 14,486.20.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 94.393 after a recent bounce from below 94.2.

The Japanese yen traded at 113.46 per dollar after yesterday’s weakening from below 112.8 against the greenback. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7341, above levels around $0.73 seen earlier in the trading week.

(With Inputs from cnbc)

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