Asia Market Update: Asian indices trade mixed, US equity FUTs decline ahead of expected US House stimulus vote on Friday; It remains unclear how the House vote will be conducted; India makes emergency rate cuts.


General Trend:

- Australian equities underperform, declining sectors include Energy and Financial

- Japanese equity markets rise following losses on Thursday

- Shanghai Property sector rises over 3% in early trading

- Various HK-listed banks are due to report earnings later today (including ICBC, Bank of China, China Construction Bank and Bank of Communications)

- Singapore Airlines declined by over 9%, announced up to S$15.0B stock and convertible bond offering

- USD/JPY declines in the face of general weakness in the US dollar, investors assess recent US weekly jobless claims data; US House may vote on stimulus bill on Friday, Japan’s fiscal year is due to end on March 31st

- Japan PM Abe: Lockdown of Tokyo would have severe impact on economy, shares Tokyo Gov Koike's sense of crisis

- Trump and Xi held phone conversation following recent G20 video conference


Headlines/Economic Data

Australia/New Zealand

- ASX 200 opened +0.6%

- (NZ) New Zealand Mar ANZ consumer Confidence Index: 106.3 v 122.1 prior; M/M: -12.9% v -0.5% prior

- (AU) Australia PM Morrison: Planning 3rd round of economic stimulus; Tightens enforcement on self isolation for citizens returning from overseas; all new arrivals to be quarantined for 2 weeks

- (NZ) Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) signs MOU with Financial Markets Authority (FMA); to assist each agency cooperate in areas of common interest where cooperation and coordination results in the most effective and efficient regulation of the New Zealand financial system

- (AU) Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA): Excess cash at exchange settlement (ES) accounts at A$63.6B v A$59.3B

- (AU) Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) adds A$2.25B to banking system through repos v A$2.69B prior

- (AU) Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) offers to buy total of A$3.0B in bonds v A$3.0B prior

- (NZ) Reserve Bank of Australia (RBNZ) proposes to buy NZ$1.35B in Govt bonds with maturities from 2021-2037 in next week’s operation; Operation dates: March 20, April 1 and April 3

- (AU) Australia Feb 8-month underlying cash deficit A$16.3B v -A$13.7Be


- Nikkei 225 opened +1.9%

- (JP) Japan Mar Tokyo CPI Y/Y: 0.4% v 0.3%e (2-year low); CPI (ex-fresh Food) Y/Y: 0.4% v 0.4%e; CPI (ex-fresh f/energy) Y/Y: 0.7% v 0.6%e

- (JP) Japan PM Abe: Want to take bold steps to reach V-shaped recovery; a 2-year delay to Olympics would put Japan at risk for losing momentum - speaking from parliament

- (JP) IOC expected to make decision on the schedule for the Tokyo Olympics in 3 weeks - Japanese press

- (JP) Japan Econ Min Nishimura: Reiterates no need to declare state of emergency currently

- (JP) JAPAN CABINET OFFICE (GOVT) MARCH MONTHLY ECONOMIC REPORT: Cuts overall economic assessment to "severe" and no longer sees the domestic economy in recovery (after the close yesterday)


- Kospi opened +4.1%

- (KR) South Korea Mar Consumer Confidence: 78.4 v 96.9 prior (10-year low)

- (KR) South Korea confirms 91 additional coronavirus cases v 104 prior, total cases 9,332 v 9,241 prior

- (KR) South Korea diplomat: Don't expect coronavirus to destabilize North Korea – Yonhap

- 005930.KR To temporarily close another manufacturing plant in Campinas, Sao Paulo Brazil due to coronavirus for 2-weeks until April 12th

- (KR) South Korea Feb duty free sales KRW1.1T, -45.5% m/m

China/Hong Kong

- Hang Seng opened +1.8%; Shanghai Composite opened +1.0%


- (CN) China National Health Commission Coronavirus Update for March 26th: 55 additional cases (54 imported) v 67 prior; Additional deaths: 5 v 6 prior; Hubei: 0 additional cases v 0 prior; additional deaths: 5 v 6 prior

- (CN) China PBoC Open Market Operation (OMO): Skips reverse repo operations for the 28th consecutive session, Net CNY0B v CNY0B prior

- (CN) China PBOC sets Yuan reference rate: 7.0427 v 7.0692 prior

- (CN) China Ministry of Commerce official Xian Guoyi: China will encourage local authorities to to roll out measures to help stimulate auto sales, including encouraging purchases of new energy vehicles and unveil auto replacement policies - Xinhua

Other Asia

- (IN) INDIA CENTRAL BANK (RBI) CUTS REPURCHASE RATE BY BY 75BPS TO 4.40%; widens rate corridor (intra-policy move)

- SIA.SG Prices 1.77B shares at S$3.00/share in rights offering; To issue S$5.3B in new equity and raise up to S$9.7B through issuance of mandatory convertible bonds; arranged S$4.0B bridge loan facility

- (SG) Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS): To support lending via a new $60B facility for banks (yesterday after the close)

- (SG) Singapore govt said to allocate another S$48.0B in second virus stimulus package – press (yesterday after the close)

North America

- (US) US House expected to debate stimulus bill for 2 hours starting at 09:00ET (13:00GMT) on Friday (March 27th), unclear if the bill will be able to pass through a voice vote as some Democrats may request a recorded vote; there are talks about a possible roll-call (recorded) vote if a voice vote is blocked

- (US) Pres Trump: G20 leaders expressed 'tremendous spirit' to get coronavirus 'over with'; will have more information next week on relaxing social distancing; expect to speak with China President Xi tonight, expect another deal with China

- (US) Some Lawmakers said to have asked President Trump to delay all tariffs for 90-days – press

- (US) VP Pence: Abbott is seeking approval for a 15-minute coronavirus test; so far 552K coronavirus tests have been completed

- (G7) Considering a plan to invest "several billion dollars" in a research organization to develop a vaccine for coronavirus - press


- (EU) EU Council President Michel: Leaders' priority is to preserve flow of goods in EU and preserve the single market; EU institutions will lay ground to get out of crisis

- (EU) Germany Chancellor Merkel: impact of coronavirus is likely to be bigger than the 2008 financial crisis; the ESM was created to address this kind of crisis - comments after EU leaders summit

- (IT) Italy total coronavirus cases rise to 80,539 from 74,386 (+8.3% v +7.5% prior); death toll rises to 8,165 from 7,503 prior, +8% d/d

- VOW3.DE CEO: Production shutdown costs €2.2B/week - German Press

- (UK) Feb Auto Manufacturing 122.2K units, -0.8% y/y - SMMT


Levels as of 1:20 ET

- Nikkei 225, +1.7%, ASX 200 -5.3%, Hang Seng +0.4%; Shanghai Composite +0.9%; Kospi-0.1 %

- Equity Futures: S&P500 -2%; Nasdaq100 -1.8%, Dax -2.2%; FTSE100 -2.2%

- EUR 1.1087-1.1023; JPY 109.71-108.26 ; AUD 0.6127-0.6034 ;NZD 0.6015-0.5932

- Gold -0.7% at $1,640/oz; Crude Oil +1.8% at $23.00/brl; Copper +0.2% at $2.187/lb

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