SINGAPORE – Asia Pacific stocks were lower Tuesday morning as investors await the Bank of Japan’s rate decision.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 lost 0.11% while the Topix index lost 0.42%.

The Bank of Japan will announce its rate decision at 11:00 AM HK / SIN. This is because several regions, including Tokyo and Osaka, have recently been put into a new state of emergency to curb the spread of coronavirus infections.

Mainland China stocks were lower in early trading, with the Shanghai Composite falling 0.2% while the Shenzhen Component falling 0.19%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell 0.2%.

South Korea’s Kospi sat under the flatline.

Meanwhile, Australian stocks fell as the S & P / ASX 200 fell 0.47%.

MSCI’s broadest index for stocks in the Asia-Pacific region outside of Japan was down 0.19%.

Investors will continue to monitor India’s Covid situation as the country continues to battle a second wave that is marginalizing its healthcare system.

In terms of corporate development, HSBC will announce its first quarter results on Tuesday. Prior to this release, HSBC’s shares in Hong Kong had barely changed in Tuesday morning trading.

On Wall Street overnight, the S&P 500 rose 0.18% to a closing record of 4,187.62, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 61.92 points to 33,981.57. The Nasdaq Composite was up 0.87% to a new high of 14,138.78.

Currencies and oil

The US dollar index, which tracks the greenback versus a basket of its peers, stood at 90.935 and struggled to recover from last week’s slip of over 91.2.

The Japanese yen was trading at 108.24 per dollar, still weaker than 107.5 versus the greenback late last week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $ 0.7791 after rising below $ 0.776 yesterday.

Oil prices were higher on the morning of trading hours in Asia and the international benchmark’s Brent crude oil futures rose 0.41% to $ 65.92 a barrel. US crude oil futures also rose 0.37% to $ 62.14 a barrel.

Here’s a look at what’s on tap:

  • Japan: Bank of Japan monetary policy statement and interest rate decision at 11:00 AM HK / SIN