Asian stock markets retreated on Friday after yesterday’s losses on Wall Street and as sentiment was weighed down by disappointing data from the Bank of Japan’s quarterly survey of the world’s third-largest economy.
In the Bank of Japan’s “tankan” survey the key index for large manufacturing firms fell to 9 from 14 in the previous quarter, falling for a second straight quarter.
A better picture came from a survey by China’s Caixin, which said the country’s factory activity expanded at its strongest pace in 13 months after the government decided to ease measures to contain the pandemic in Shanghai and other major cities.
Caixin’s monthly PMI strengthened to 51.7 from 48.1 in May, passing above the 50-point level that separates expansion from contraction in activity.
On the board, Japan’s Nikkei 225 lost 1.6% to 25,966.52 points.
In mainland China the Shanghai Composite lost 0.4%. Hong Kong’s stock market remained closed today due to a local holiday.
South Korea’s Kospi shed 1.4%, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.4%.
Indexes in Singapore and Taiwan and Indonesia also fell.
On Thursday, Wall Street closed the worst quarter since the outbreak of the pandemic in early 2020. For the S&P 500 it was also the worst first half since 1970.