Asian Markets Trade Mixed After Incoming BOJ Head’s Remarks

Equities in Asia and the Pacific region traded in a mixed session on Friday, with the incoming head of Japan’s central bank, Kazuo Ueda, allaying fears of an early end to the country’s ultra-easy monetary policy and sending bond yields lower globally.

As of 9.31 A.M. (Thai time), the Nikkei 225 in Japan rose 1.16%. Japan’s core inflation in January rose 4.2%, the highest since 1981.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.27%. South Korea’s Kospi gained 0.18%.

Chinese markets opened lower on Friday, with Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index 1.26% down, while in mainland, the Shanghai Composite was 0.43% lower.

Overnight in the United States, stocks closed higher in choppy trading Thursday, as investors remained apprehensive about the Federal Reserve’s rate hike plan.

Kazuo Ueda, the nominee for governor of the Bank of Japan, has backed the present monetary policy, according to a report by Reuters quoting his comments made in parliament early Friday.

The current strategy is “appropriate,” Ueda reportedly stated, remarking on the central bank’s ultra-dovish monetary policy.

He also mentioned that the central bank needs more time to accomplish its inflation target, which is to maintain stable prices.

Given that inflation has not yet consistently met the central bank’s 2% target, Ueda has indicated that he will keep monetary policy ultra loose, and there has been little sign that he will soon unwind the BOJ program known as yield curve control (YCC).