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HONG KONG: Asian shares fell on Thursday after Wall Street snapped a long winning streak, while Treasury yields were near five-month lows on hopes Britain’s notably soft inflation reading would be echoed in looming US price data.

The equities rally, which had been driven by falling interest rates and the Federal Reserve’s dovish turn, stalled on Thursday even after US economic data that beat expectations initially turned the major indexes green.

A far steeper-than-expected decline in British inflation also took markets by surprise.

“Three US benchmark averages sharply retreated in the late session after hitting their respective intraday highs, snapping a more-than-one-week winning streak. This could be due to an overbought market as rate cuts optimism ran out of steam,” said Tina Teng, market analyst at CMC Markets.

“Global government bond yields accelerated falling due to risk-off sentiment.”

Investors on Thursday will be monitoring the Indonesian central bank’s latest policy decision, consumer price inflation and trade figures from Hong Kong, and producer price inflation data from South Korea.

Early in the Asian trading day, MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.6%, after US stocks tumbled to close sharply lower in the previous session.

The index is up 1.7% so far this month. US stock futures, the S&P 500 e-minis, were up 0.17%.

Asian shares rise as US rate cut fever lingers, oil holds gains

Australian shares were down 0.4%, while Japan’s Nikkei stock index slid 1.49%.

China’s blue-chip CSI300 index remained flat in early trade. It is on track for a sixth straight weekly loss, which could be its worst weekly performance in 12 years and a record fifth consecutive monthly loss.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index opened down 0.86%.

On Wednesday, an abrupt mid-afternoon nosedive ended Wall Street’s impressive rally.

All three major US stock indexes, which were at or near record highs this week, veered lower late in the session to end 1.3% to 1.5% below Tuesday’s close.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 1.27%, the S&P 500 lost 1.47% and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.5%.

In US Treasuries, the yield on benchmark 10-year Treasury notes reached 3.8603% compared with its US close of 3.877% on Wednesday when it fell to an almost five-month month low as government bond yields fell globally after the British inflation data.

The two-year yield, which rises with traders’ expectations of higher Fed fund rates, touched 4.3503% compared with a US close of 4.369%.

In currencies, the dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of currencies of other major trading partners, was down at 102.38.

The greenback on Wednesday strengthened against sterling after the British inflation data fuelled speculation of rate cuts by the Bank of England.

Sterling was last trading at $1.2644, up 0.06% on the day, while the euro was up 0.1% at $1.0949.

In commodities, global oil benchmark Brent hovered above $80 a barrel amid jitters over global trade disruptions and geopolitical tensions in the Middle East following attacks on ships in the Red Sea by Yemen’s Iran-aligned Houthi forces.

Brent crude was last trading at $79.70 per barrel and US crude dipped 0.81% to $73.62 a barrel. Gold was slightly higher.

Spot gold was traded at $2033.2513 per ounce.

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