Asia Markets, Australia Retail Sales, Hong Kong Mask Mandate, Bank of Japan

44 minutes ago

Shares in the South Korean battery maker jump after winning the Tesla order

Shares in South Korean battery maker L&F rose more than 15% after it announced it had won a nearly $3 billion order from Tesla.

The company said in a filing that it has won a $2.91 billion contract to supply high-nickel cathode materials to Tesla from Jan. 1, 2024, to Dec. 31, 2025.

Shares in L&F last traded 10% higher on Tuesday, hovering at their highest levels since May 2022.

– Jihye Lee

An hour ago

Hong Kong ends the mask mandate from 1 March

Hong Kong will end its indoor and outdoor mask mandate on Wednesday, March 1, Chief Executive John Lee said in a briefing.

When asked about the reasoning behind the timing, Lee cited “overall judgment” and stressed that the government had previously said it would monitor the situation closely.

Mask rules for hospitals and nursing homes will be “added administratively,” Lee said.

– Jihye Lee

An hour ago

Bank of Japan official reiterates support for 2% inflation target

Bank of Japan Deputy Governor Masazumi Wakatabe reiterated his support for the central bank’s 2% inflation target, according to a transcript of his speech at Columbia University.

– The very idea of ​​having a clearly defined inflation target is based on the importance of communication, he said in the speech.

“Communication with the general public is particularly important as their perception plays a key role in anchoring inflation expectations, thus influencing the actual development of inflation,” he said, adding the central bank’s “sustainable monetary easing” brought a positive effect on the real economy.

– Jihye Lee

An hour ago

SM Entertainment announces plans to change its shareholder return policy

South Korean entertainment company SM Entertainment announced an improved return policy for shareholders ahead of its annual general meeting in March, according to a Monday report.

The company plans to expand its shareholder return targets to at least 30% of its separated net income from 20%.

The move is seen as part of a wider effort to retain small investors who own just over 70% of the shares in SM.

Rival K-pop agency Hybe became the largest shareholder in SM after buying a 14.8% stake from Lee earlier this month, while Kakao bought a 9.05% stake.

Shares in SM Entertainment rose 0.25% on Tuesday, Hybe rose nearly 3% and Kakao rose 0.32%.

– Lim Hui Jie

3 hours ago

Retail sales in Japan rose 6.3% in January, beating expectations

Japan’s retail sales rose 6.3% for January compared to the same period last year, beating economists’ expectations of 4%.

Public data showed commercial sales in January 2023 were 45.7 trillion yen ($335 billion), up 3.2% from the same month last year.

Wholesale sales were 32.7 billion yen, up 2% compared to last year, while retail sales rose 6.3% to 13 trillion yen.

-Lim Hui Jie

3 hours ago

Japan’s industrial production falls more than expected, the worst in eight months

Japan’s industrial output fell 4.6% from a month ago in January, the biggest decline the economy has seen in eight months, according to Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

The reading fell further than expectations for a 2.9% decline and follows a 0.3% gain last month.

Automobiles, equipment for the production of semiconductors, technical parts and units led to the decline overall. Shipments fell moderately, leaving inventories lower for the second consecutive month.

Core capital goods saw sharp falls, the release says.

– Jihye Lee

3 hours ago

CNBC Pro: Semiconductors, AI and more: These top-rated ETFs offer a way to play on tech’s hottest trends

Two technology themes have taken Wall Street by storm so far this year.

One is the rebound in semiconductor stocks, as demand rebounds for chips; the other is artificial intelligence, following the buzz around chatbot ChatGPT.

CNBC Pro screened for the top-rated ETFs with exposure to semiconductor and/or AI-related stocks (among others) using Morningstar data. The resulting funds were all rated four or five stars by Morningstar and have performed well over the past three years.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Weizhen Tan

3 hours ago

CNBC Pro: ‘Quite bearish on Tesla’: Market experts say price cuts will hit the electric car giant’s share price

19 hours ago

China launches draft plan to improve lending for rental properties

The People’s Bank of China and the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission issued a draft of measures to increase financial institutions’ capacity in lending to companies that rent out residential properties.

The measures aim to expand the bond financing channels for rental housing, support the issuance of operating loans for rental and strengthen credit support for the construction of rental housing, the draft showed.

– Jihye Lee

7 hours ago

Interest rates are driving recent stock market performance, chart analysts say

Investors wondering what drives stock market movements should look at interest rates.

Figure analysts say that last week’s sell-off may be linked to the rise in bond yields. The three major stock market indexes posted their worst weeks of the year last week.

“The recent stock market reset feels more like a byproduct of higher prices, rather than a (simple) reset out of overbought territory for stocks,” JC O’Hara, chief market technician at Roth MKM, said in a note to clients on Sunday.

“Overall, we think this pullback has been tidy for stocks,” he added in the note. “But higher prices are becoming a big factor again.”

And analysts said interest rate movements could be a driver for the stock market going forward. CNBC Pro subscribers can read the full story here.

– Alex Harring

10 hours ago

The bear market could start again in March, says Morgan Stanley’s Wilson

The stock market’s recent attempt to pull out of a downtrend may soon come to an end, according to Morgan Stanley.

Mike Wilson, the firm’s chief U.S. equity strategist, said in a note to clients Monday that the S&P 500 is on the verge of falling back into a bear market.

“With the stock market showing signs of exhaustion after the last Fed meeting, the S&P 500 is at critical technical support. Given our view on earnings, March is a high-risk month for the bear market to resume,” Wilson said.

For more, read the full story on CNBC Pro.

—Jesse Pound, Tanaya Macheel

15 hours ago

The 2-year yield reached its highest level since 2007

The 2-year yield added to February’s gains on Monday, reaching 4.8% on the day. That’s the highest level since July 2007. Short-term interest rates have moved higher this month as traders worry about the possibility of tighter monetary policy for longer than expected.

See diagram…

2-year interest rate reaches highest level since July 2007

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