Asian markets fell in early trading Wednesday, following new doubts about a U.S.-China trade deal and ahead of an expected interest-rate cut by the U.S. Federal Reserve.
While U.S. officials, including President Donald Trump, in recent days had touted progress in trade talks, Reuters reported Tuesday that a “phase one” deal might not be ready to be signed at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Chile next month. “Our goal is to sign it in Chile. But sometimes texts aren’t ready,” a U.S. official told Reuters.
Separately, China accused the U.S. of “bullying” over a proposed ban on Chinese telecom equipment in U.S. networks, and China’s ambassador to the United Nations suggested that U.S. criticism over human rights could impact trade talks.
Meanwhile, investors are awaiting the conclusion of the Fed’s two-day meeting, with many expecting the third rate cut of the year but uncertain if the central bank will signal further monetary easing in the future.
fell 0.4% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index
slipped 0.3%. The Shanghai Composite
edged down 0.4 while the Shenzhen Composite
slid 0.8%. South Korea’s Kospi
declined 0.4%, while benchmark indexes in Taiwan
mostly rose slightly. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200
Among individual stocks, electronics company NEC
slid in Tokyo trading, along with SoftBank
and Uniqlo parent Fast Retailing
. In Hong Kong, Apple component maker AAC
fell, along with PetroChina
. Chip maker SK Hynix
retreated in South Korea while BHP
and Rio Tinto
fell in Australia.