Asia-Pacific markets traded mixed on Friday as investors remained cautious over the short-term economic impact of the coronavirus as cases around the world continue to rise.
Australia’s benchmark ASX 200 reversed earlier losses to climb 0.18%, with the heavily-weighted financials subindex up 0.27%. Materials and energy sectors still struggled for gains.
The Nikkei 225 index in Japan fell 0.51% while the Topix index was down 0.22%. South Korea’s Kospi index traded up 0.19%.
Data from Japan showed core consumer prices fell in October at their fastest pace annually in nearly a decade, raising deflation fears in an economy that is still grappling with the pandemic. The country’s factory activity decline also sped up in November.
On the Chinese mainland, the Shanghai composite rose a little under 0.1% in early trade, the Shenzhen composite was up 0.27% and the Shenzhen component added 0.35%. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index gained 0.45%.