Asian Stocks Dip on Pandemic Concerns


Asian stocks came under pressure on Tuesday as investors struggled to balance hopes for more economic stimulus and vaccines with fresh concerns about a surge in COVID19 infections.

Mixed Asian trade followed a similarly mixed Wall Street session in which the techheavy Nasdaq Composite closed at a record high while the two other major U.S. indices fell.

European markets are also likely to struggle for firm direction with Londons FTSE down 0.3 and Eurostoxx 50 futures and those of Germanys DAX flat.

You saw more than a slight moderation to the SP 500, and the Dow, but youre still looking at these markets at record highs, said Tom Piotrowski, a market analyst with CommSec. Its a matter of looking out for what the next catalyst is for these markets.

MSCIs broadest index of AsiaPacific shares outside Japan narrowed its losses from early trade, but was still down 0.02 as anxiety over the coronavirus pandemic capped sentiment.

Among Asias top markets, Australian shares closed higher for a sixth straight session, lifted by data showing an improvement in business sentiment. The SPASX 200 index rose 0.2 to 6,687.7, adding about 3 in the past six sessions.

However, Japans Nikkei 225 dipped 0.22 and Seouls Kospi lost 1.53.

Chinese bluechips remained flat while Hong Kongs Hang Seng was down 0.56, as SinoU.S. tensions continued to weigh on the market.

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