Things to know before trading Asia on Monday ; Expect Japan & S Korea to open higher.

03 Apr

Asian markets open Monday:-  Japan, S Korea, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, India.
Markets closed:- Australia, Taiwan, China, Hong Kong
European Markets also closed Monday

IMF/World Bank Spring meetings throughout the week.

Key data ahead this week 
Japan Household spending, Leading Economic Index, Coincident Index, Consumer Confidence and Eco Watchers data.
S Korea Current Account
Taiwan Inflation Rate, Wholesale Prices and Trade Data
China Caixin Services and Composite PMI’s, Inflation Rate and PPI
Hong Kong PMI
Eurozone Unemployment, Services, Composite and Construction PMI’s and PPI
Germany, France and UK: Services, Composite and Construction PMI’s.
Germany Trade data, Factory Orders
France Industrial Production, Trade data
UK Halifax House Price Index.
US Services and Composite PMI’s, ISM Non Manufacturing Data, Factory orders, Jolt’s job openings, Consumer Inflation Expectations, Balance of Trade, FOMC minutes and PPI data.

OPEC+ expressed growing confidence in the global economic recovery by agreeing to increase oil production gradually in the coming months.  Highlight from Thursday’s meeting.  Key being as countries like the US rapidly expand their vaccination programs, there are growing signals that the oil market is healing.

US Markets closed Friday re-open Monday
US Trade Representative (USTR) Katherine Tai on Thursday raised concerns about Vietnam’s currency practices during a virtual meeting with her Vietnamese counterpart.  Tai also addressed US concerns on illegal timber practices, digital trade and agriculture, according to a readout from her office of the meeting with Vietnamese Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh.   Key is that Vietnam has been a big beneficiary of the US/China trade war and will now come under greater scrutiny from the US.  They agreed to a “sustained dialogue” in the future, it said.
Non Farm Payrolls Mar 916k vs 468k Feb revised (F/cast was 680k)
Unemployment Rate Mar 6% vs 6.2% Feb (F/cast was +6%)
Non Farm Payrolls Private 780k Mar vs 558k Feb revised (F/cast was 455k)
Ave Hourly Earnings Mar +4.2% YoY vs 5.2% Feb revised (F/cast was 4.7%)
Ave Hourly Earnings Mar -0.1% MoM vs +0.3% Feb revised (F/cast was +0.2%)
Ave Weekly Hours Mar 34.9 vs 34.6 Feb (F/cast was 34.8)
Participation Rate Mar 61.5% vs 61.4% Feb (F/cast was 61.7%)
Government Payrolls Mar 136k vs -90k Feb revised (F/cast was 225k)
Manufacturing Payrolls Mar 53k vs 18k Feb revised (F/cast was 35k)
Servies & Composite PMI, ISM New York Index, ISM Non Manufacturing Data (PMI, Business Activity, Prices, New Orders, Employment), Factory Orders.

EUROPEAN Markets closed Friday and Monday; re-open Tuesday

Expect Nikkei to open higher on the higher US jobs data
Yen last traded 110.60
Data due 
Services PMI Final Mar (Feb was 46.3 F/cast is 46.5)
Composite PMI Final Mar (Feb was 48.2 F/cast is 48.3)
PM Suga designates Osaka and Hyogo and Miyagi for semi-emergency measures in the light of rising covid cases.
Japan, the United States and South Korea agreed in high-level security talks on Friday to work together to keep up pressure on North Korea to give up its nuclear and ballistic missile programs.
Japan and the United States will cooperate on the supply of critical parts for chips, aiming for an agreement when the leaders of both countries meet later this month, originally scheduled for April 9 but now pushed back to April 16.  
Automakers likely to make further production cuts due to Renesas fire, with production at Renesas’s plant unlikely to return to normal until summer.  -VE
Kioxia Holdings Corp is focused on pursuing an initial public offering (IPO) as soon as this summer, rather than engaging with potential foreign acquirers and navigating foreign regulatory approvals, four people familiar with the matter said.  Comes after Western Digital and Micron are rumoured to be considering bids for the company.
Sony announced that it will be ending online support and PlayStation Store access for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita in the next few months.
With the start of the new year there is an expectation that the Japanese will resume their purchases of foreign bonds having eased back over the past month.

Expect markets to open higher on good US jobs data which added to the positive sentiment.  Building on Friday’s close, Kospi finished at 6 week hihg.where the Additionally improved earnings forecasts ahead of results also good for sentiment.  Kospi 3,000 likely to be seen as the support level. Investors will also be watching for the mayoral election results; seen as a referendum on Moon’s administration.
Data due
Foreign Exchange Reserves Mar (Feb was $447.56b F/cast is 453b)
KDCA reported 543 new covid cases above 500 for a fourth day in a row; with 521 local infections.  Government re-iterated for people to comply with the social distancing rules.
Yoon Suk-heun, chief of South Korea‘s financial watchdog, pledged on Friday to beef up its oversight to prevent a spillover of risks associated with environmental, social and governance factors in the Korean finance industry.
Genesis, the independent luxury brand of Hyundai Motor Co., said Friday it will debut its flagship sedan and sports utility vehicle (SUV) in China to target the high-end segment in the world's largest vehicle market. +VE
The power struggle over Hanjin KAL, the holding company of Hanjin Group, seemed to settle at last as the three-way alliance of an estranged sister of the Korean Air chairman, an activist fund and a builder officially disbanded, industry data showed Friday.
Cast.era, a media technology joint venture between SK Telecom Co. and US media giant Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc., will launch a next-generation broadcast solution that boosts television content quality this year, the South Korean company said Friday.The telecom operator said Cast.era has completed testing of the 5G-ATSC3.0 platform, which boosts broadcast quality using SK Telecom's 5G cloud and artificial intelligence (AI) technology.
Hanwha Systems, the affiliate spearheading Hanwha Group’s space and defense IT business, will set up its first US office, according to industry sources Friday.
Hyundai Motor denied a rumour that it is about to establish a joint venture with US tech giant Google to develop a self-driving service.

Market closed Qingming Festival re-opens Tuesday
No data due 
Anaylsts expect the Taiex to move higher when it re-opens after the good US jobs data but then likely to see some consolidation.  TSMC likely to lead following is unveiling of a rare multiyear investment plan to meet the current chip shortage.  Also Q1 earnings about to start and expected to be strong.
Siemens Taiwan expects revenue growth to gather pace this year,  benefiting from an uptrend in demand for its energy management solutions from local semiconductor companies and machine tool manufacturers, which were hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. Revenue last year beat expectations as business activity returned to normal, thanks to the government’s fast and appropriate response to contain the pandemic, Siemens Taiwan president and chief executive officer Erdal Elver said +VE
Kwang Yang Motor Co, which has been selling gasoline-powered scooters for more than half a century under the name KYMCO, is reshaping its brand image by adopting a second brand name, Ionex, for its electric scooter business as it moves to challenge market leader Gogoro Inc

Market closed for Ching Ming Festival to re-open Tuesday
No data due
The Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) yesterday said it is tightening scrutiny over corporate bond issuance, and has punished a brokerage for lax due diligence in bond underwriting. The move comes after Chinese exchanges strengthened inspections on initial public offerings (IPOs), as regulators seek to limit financial risks while promoting growth of Chinese capital markets. China has about US$4.5 trillion of outstanding corporate bonds traded on the country’s exchanges and the interbank market. SSE said it has launched onsite inspections on select bond issuance applicants, with a focus on robustness of due diligence by underwriters. The bourse said in a statement it publicly censured metal products maker Ningxia Yuangao Industrial Group Co for “fake” and inadequate disclosure ahead of its default, and sent warning letters to its underwriter Huaxi Securities Co and its law firm. -VE for short term but +VE long term.
Reuters report In China's small cities, home buyers suffer as debt-ridden developers fail to finish projects.  In Zhuozhou, a small city in China’s north, Zhu has stopped making mortgage payments on her apartment after its developer (China Fortune Land Development, who defaulted on $5,7b of debt ) did not build a promised rail line that would have allowed residents to commute to Beijing for work.  In Dali in the southwest, Li, a small business owner, is still waiting to move into an apartment that was meant to be handed over more than two years ago.  The fourth postponement and believed to be due to the developer (Dali Haidong Development & Investment Group) not having have the money to pay its contractors.  Shows the contrast between the demand in major cities and oversupply in smaller ones and highlights the need for due diligence.  But also raises concerns about the banks and other financial institutions exposure to the sector.  -VE
Chinese state media denouces ‘two-faced’ Xinjiang officials accused of colluding with extremists.  A documentary shown by CGTN onFriday says the ‘enemy within’ includes a former deputy head of the political and legal committee and ex-education chief.Beijing’s policies in the region have attracted increasing international criticism amid accusations of genocide and forced labour which it denies.
China’s expat tax reform could see more than a third of American firms leave Shanghai, AmCham says.   China is ending tax exemptions on foreign employee allowances next year, a move that has sparked concern among multinationals in Shangha i.  More than a third of foreign companies based in the commercial hub say they are considering relocation, American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) in Shanghai survey shows. -VE
China’s advanced manufacturing upgrade backed to gather pace, driven by top priority status in five-year plan.  Beijing outlined a comprehensive plan to upgrade its manufacturing capabilities by 2025 via eight priority areas, including robotics, aircraft engines, new energy vehicles and smart cars.  Hi-tech manufacturing and equipment manufacturing outperformed overall manufacturing in March’s official manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) +VE robotic makers

Market closed Monday and Tuesday; re-opens Wednesday
ADR’s last closed Thursday +117pts 
Press reports only 2 new covid cases (1 linked to local case and 1 imported) compares to 19 on Friday
FT reports that some people are taking the Sinovac vaccine in order to get visas to travel to China as it said “Visa facilitation applies only to applicants who have been inoculated  with Covid-19 vaccines produced in China,” the Chinese government said last month, “Visa facilitation applies only to applicants who have been inoculated with Covid-19 vaccines produced in China,” last month.  Yet some were concerned that European and other western governments might not accept Chinese-made vaccines for quarantine-free travel.  Having taken one vaccine then you cannot take a different one until about 12 months later.
Lau Chi-pang, chairman of the Curriculum Development Council committee on the Citizenship and Social Development subject, says police from the National Security Department should provide more information to teachers to help with their teaching. Speaking on a radio program, Lau said the changes on the subject of Liberal Studies was "quite revolutionary," as teachers will no longer only teach students how to deal with tests.

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