A majority of markets across Asia experienced negative momentum as oil returned to the red. This has put an end to the week-long rally in the markets, which was partly driven by bargain buying and oil price appreciation.
However, the markets lost on oil, which re-entered negative territory today. The fall was led by Japan’s Nikkei 225 that dipped 1.42% to 15,967. The suit was followed by Australia ASX that shed 0.77% to 5,008.30. Hang Seng and Shanghai SE Composite Index closed 0.41% and 0.10% lower at 19,284.44 and 2,860.02 respectively. India’s Mumbai Sensex and Taiwan TSEC 50 were an exception as both of them added 0.43% and 0.12%, during the day.
In response to the mood around Asia, the European markets opened lower but managed to push higher after an upbeat UK retail sales data. As per the reports, retail sales grew 2.3% month-on-month in January, which came widely higher than the expectations of 0.8% growth. James Smith at ING Bank viewed the data encouraging and projected that the rate hike is possible towards the end if the UK opts to stay in the European Union.
Retail sales surge
After the retail sales, the market participants in Europe will stay tuned to the developments at EU Leader’s Summit in Brussels, which will weigh over the market sentiment. There is a higher likelihood that the weakness in oil could overshadow the positive retail sales data during the remaining part of the day. FTSE 100 traded 0.25% up at 5,987.02 while Euronext 100 added 0.09% to 835.14. France’s CAC 40 was only marginally higher by 0.15% to 4,246.25, whereas Germany’s DAX traded flat during the late Asian hours.