Enthusiasm for stocks faded in Asia, with Japan shares flattening after a two-week run-up and markets in Australia and China making fractional gains only.
The Nikkei Stock Average finished down less than 0.1% Monday. Australia’s S&P ASX 00 was up 0.6%, while both the Shanghai Composite Index and South Korea’s Kospi gained 0.1%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index finished up 0.1%.
Expectations for easing from global central banks have kept most Asian markets moving higher in recent weeks, as has a rebound in flows to emerging markets. During the week of July 14 to 20, investors bought up to US$9.1 billion (£6.93 billion) of Asian equities, the biggest weekly flow since 2014, according to Jefferies.
But traders and analysts increasingly say the market has been dialling back hopes, concerned that Bank of Japan will fail to live up to investors’ rather large easing expectations.