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market | IST

Asian shares steady, but set for weekly losses as global growth fears nag

Mini

European shares also looked set to rise on opening with pan-region Euro Stoxx 50 futures up 0.61 percent and FTSE futures 0.41 percent higher. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.12 percent on Friday but was set to finish down 2.7 percent on the week, which would be its worst week in four.

Asian shares steadied in early trading on Friday after losses earlier in the week, but China jitters and global growth concerns weighed on investors' minds, while the dollar sat near a three-week high.
European shares also looked set to rise on opening with pan-region Euro Stoxx 50 futures up 0.61 percent and FTSE futures 0.41 percent higher.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.12 percent on Friday but was set to finish down 2.7 percent on the week, which would be its worst week in four.
"We're looking at a market that is nervous, though hasn't seen sentiment turn outright bearish," said Kyle Rodda, an analyst at IG markets.
"If you look for catalysts that could justify the next move to the upside in equities and risk assets, they are nowhere to be seen because global growth concerns are keeping investors on edge," he said.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index rose 0.23 percent with traders looking for oversold stocks after the benchmark posted its lowest close in 10 months the day before, as the saga around China Evergrande Group lurched towards a conclusion.
The embattled property developer's shares dropped a further 11.8 percent on Friday, down 35 percent this week but there were gains elsewhere, including in technology stocks. The previously bruised Hang Seng Tech Index rose 2.8 percent, on track for its best day in three-and-a-half weeks.
Australian shares fell 0.8 percent, as a fall in iron ore prices hurt miners, but Chinese blue chips edged up 0.58 percent and Japan's Nikkei gained 0.62 percent to head back towards a 31-year high hit on Monday.
US stock futures, the S&P 500 e-minis, were up 0.7 percent.
Chinese data earlier this week suggested growth in the world's second-largest economy will slow in the second half of this year, while economists polled by Reuters said they expected the US economic rebound to have been dented in Q3, partly on the spread of the Delta coronavirus variant.
Respondents to that poll also pushed back expectations for the US Federal Reserve to announce a tapering of asset purchases to November.
This means next week's Fed policy meeting is likely less consequential than would have been expected a few months ago when many investors felt a September tapering announcement was an option, but traders will be still watching closely for any policy clues from the meeting, especially after the US posted an unexpected increase in August retail sales on Thursday.
Also due next week is a policy meeting of Indonesia's central bank, but all 25 analysts surveyed by Reuters expected Bank Indonesia will keep its key interest rate steady.
The dollar held onto its overnight gains in Asian hours on Friday, having been supported by the strong retail data while the yield on benchmark 10-year Treasury notes was 1.3362 percent little changed from its US close of 1.331 percent, after also rising on the data.
The dollar index stood at 92.849, near Thursday's three-week high of 92.965
Gold recovered somewhat with the spot price trading at USD 1,761 per ounce, up 0.45 percent after falling 2.3 percent on Thursday as higher yields hurt the non-interest bearing metal.
US crude dipped 0.26 percent to USD 72.42 a barrel, and Brent crude fell 0.21 percent to USD 75.50 per barrel, as more supply came back online in the US Gulf of Mexico following two hurricanes, but both are still set to post weekly gains.