Despite a positive close on Wall Street overnight, the Asian traders fail to rejoice, as the sentiment has turned sour on the final trading day of the week amid escalating coronavirus concerns.
The surge in the covid infections worldwide has been relentless, with spiking cases in the US and Japan so much so that the world’s third-largest economy is set to expand the state of emergency on Friday to Tokyo's three neighboring prefectures of Osaka, Saitama, Chiba and Kanagawa.
New infections topped 10,000 for the first time on Thursday, with Tokyo alone reporting 3,865 cases.
The situation in the US is no better, with flare-ups of the virus popping up in various states and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) setting off new guidelines to reimpose the mask mandate,
According to BNO News, the US reported 96,085 new coronavirus cases, the biggest one-day increase since February.
On this side of the Pacific, it’s a bit of a relief, with covid cases eases off the peaks in Australia. New South Wales (NSW) reported 170 new cases on Friday when compared to the previous increase of 239 on Thursday.
Amid renewed covid jitters, the Asian stocks are in a sea of red, led mainly by the Japanese Nikkei 225 index, which is down 1.40% to 27,397. Chinese stocks are back in the negative territory, with the Shanghai Composite Index losing 1.13% so far.
Meanwhile, the futures tied to the S&P 500 index are shedding 0.66% to trade at 4,390, as of writing. The downbeat sentiment could be also associated to a big miss on the US Q2 growth figures.
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