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Market Update

Asian Markets Mostly Down

Asian markets traded mostly down Tuesday, tracking a lower closing on Wall Street overnight.

The Nikkei ended 0.6% lower, Mumbai's Sensex fell 0.5% while the All Ordinaries was down 0.2%.

The Shanghai Composite and the Hang Seng, on the other hand, managed to eke out gains of 0.1% each.

Japanese stocks were down on a slightly weaker dollar and following an auction of 2.178 trillion yen. The Japanese finance ministry auctioned 2.178 trillion yen of 0.6% 10-year bonds that have a lowest price of 98.88 to yield 0.72%.

Official data earlier Tuesday showed Australia’s trade balance rose more-than-expected last month.

Stocks on the Move

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries was up 0.2% after the company received a second order to provide train cars for Macau’s new transit system.

Komatsu dropped down 1.6% while Hitachi Construction Machinery fell 2.3%.

Index heavyweight Sony declined 0.1% while Panasonic gained 1.3%. Olympus and Toshiba were down 2.3% and 1.6% each, respectively.

After weak data yesterday, Chinese stocks were also pressured after the country’s cabinet drafted a framework to tighten the oversight of the rapidly increasing shadow-banking industry. ICBC traded 0.4% lower in Hong Kong and was flat on the mainland. The mainland-listed shares of AgBank were down 0.4%.

Casino stocks shot up with Wynn Macau up 3.9% and MGM China Holdings 3.5% higher. Casino stocks are up since Macau reported an almost 20% rise in gambling revenue last year.

Investors are also focused on trade numbers due Wednesday and inflation figures Thursday from China.

In South Korea, Samsung Electronics traded nearly flat after it said its operating profit likely declined for the first time in more than two years.

The top Sensex loser was Tata Steel down 3.3% while Tata Power, SSLT, Hindalco industries and NTPC all declined in a range between 1.5% and 3%.

CBA was up 0.2% in Sydney but WBC and NAB edged 0.1% lower each. ANZ was down 0.4%. Macquarie Group fell 1.4% after the Australian Financial Review said the investment bank was leading a consortium in talks to buy some 900 Australian gas stations and a refinery from Royal Dutch Shell.

Index leader BHP Billiton was down about a percent.