Asian Equities Trade Higher as Investors Await US Inflation Report

Asian Shares traded higher on Tuesday, tracking the bounce on Wall Street overnight, as investors await the release of the U.S. consumer price index report, which will help determine the Federal Reserve’s future course of action.

As of 9.24 A.M. (Thai time), the Nikkei 225 rose 0.57%, and the yen was trading at 132.33 to the dollar in anticipation of the Japanese government’s likely choice of its new Bank of Japan governor. Nikkei reported last week that Kazuo Ueda will be nominated for the post.

South Korea’s Kospi was 0.60% higher. In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.31% as traders responded positively to the results of a study of business confidence conducted by National Australia Bank.

The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong was flat. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite climbed 0.26%.

On Wall Street, key indexes closed higher overnight, reclaiming ground after the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite experienced their worst weekly drops in nearly two months.

Consumer Price Index (CPI) data for January will be released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics later on Tuesday and is likely to show the success of Federal Reserve policy tightening in reducing inflation.

According to a Reuters survey, experts anticipate a 0.5% increase in headline CPI in January, with the core number expected to rise to 0.4% from 0.3%. CPI probably slowed to 6.2% annually from 6.5% in December.

Investors will also be focused on the appointment of the next Governor of the Bank of Japan, as speculation grows that yield-curve control and negative-rate policy may be phased out soon under the incoming leadership of Kazuo Ueda. Yields on 10-year government bonds are currently bumping up near the central bank’s 0.5% ceiling.