Asia-Pacific markets ahead of US jobs report

The logo of the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSE), operated by Japan Exchange Group Inc. (JPX), will be shown at the stock exchange in Tokyo, Japan, on Friday, October 2, 2020.

Akio Kon | Bloomberg via Getty Images

Shares in Asia-Pacific fell Friday ahead of the monthly US jobs report, which is likely to guide the Federal Reserve’s monetary decision in November.

Payrolls are expected to rise 275,000 in September and the unemployment rate is expected to remain stable at 3.7%, according to economists polled by Dow Jones.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index lost 1.27% in the last hour of trading and the Hang Seng Tech Index lost 2.96%. Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 0.71% to 27,116.11 and the Topix index fell 0.82% to 1,906.80. In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.8% to 6,762.80.

South Korea’s Kospi lost 0.22% to 2,232.84 while the Kosdaq lost 1.07% to 698.49. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside of Japan fell 1.29%. Mainland China markets remain closed for a holiday.

Overnight, major US indices fell – the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 346.93 points, or 1.15%, to 29,926.94. The S&P 500 fell 1.02% to 3,744.52, while the Nasdaq Composite was 0.68% lower at 11,073.31.

“Stocks struggled as markets await highly anticipated US payroll data…and while Fed officials’ comments kept a ‘more is needed’ vibe,” ANZ Research analysts wrote in a note Friday.

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