Asian markets largely down as investors take wait-and-see approach

Asian markets largely down as investors take wait-and-see approach

Traders await Fed meeting amid conflicting signals on U.S.-China trade talks

Asian markets were mostly down in lackluster trading early Wednesday, as investors processed mixed signals on U.S.-China trade talks and awaited the Fed’s meeting later in the day.

On Tuesday, Bloomberg News reported that some U.S. officials were worried that China was reneging on trade concessions and that Chinese negotiators have recently pushed back because the U.S. has not sufficiently assured them that tariffs will be lifted if a trade deal is made. But later in the day, the Wall Street Journal reported that talks were in their final stages, and top U.S. officials would fly to Beijing next week for more talks, with the goal of closing a deal by the end of April.

Japan’s Nikkei NIK, +0.20% was about flat, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng HSI, -0.49% slipped 0.4%. The Shanghai Composite SHCOMP, -0.01% was down 0.6%, and South Korea’s Kospi SEU, -0.02% declined 1%. Singapore’s benchmark index STI, -0.41% retreated, while Taiwan’s Y9999, +0.37% inched up. Stocks in Australia XJO, -0.32% were down slightly.

Among individual stocks, Sony 6758, -3.38% and Nintendo 7974, -3.21% tumbled in Tokyo trading after Google unveiled its new streaming videogame service, Stadia. In Hong Kong, PetroChina 0857, +0.37% rose while property companies such as China Overseas Land & Investment 0688, -1.96% and China Resources Land 1109, -1.63% fell. Samsung 005930, +0.34% slipped in South Korea while LG Electronics 066570, +1.71% advanced. Fortescue Metals FMG, -6.74% sank in Australia, along with fellow mining stocks Rio Tinto RIO, -2.81% and BHP BHP, -1.04% .

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