SINGAPORE — Shares in major Asia-Pacific markets struggled for direction on Tuesday as investors reacted to the Australian central bank’s interest rate decision.
The Nikkei 225 in Japan rose 0.16% to close at 28,643.21 while the Topix index advanced 0.28% to end the trading day at 1,954.50. Over in South Korea, the Kospi gained 0.36% on the day to 3,305.21.
Mainland Chinese stocks, on the other hand, closed lower. The Shanghai composite slipped 0.11% to 3,530.26 while the Shenzhen component dipped 0.347% to about 14,667.65. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index fell around 0.2%, as of its final hour of trading.
Meanwhile, the S&P/ASX 200 closed 0.73% lower at 7,261.80.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose about 0.1%.
The Reserve Bank of Australia announced Tuesday its decision to keep the cash rate target at 0.1%. Following that announcement, the Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7583, still above levels below $0.752 seen yesterday.
Oil prices rise
Oil prices rose in the afternoon of Asia trading hours. U.S. crude futures jumped 1.98% to $76.65 per barrel. International benchmark Brent crude futures rose 0.31% to $77.40 per barrel.
Shares of Asia-Pacific firms in the oil space rose on Tuesday trade, with Australia’s Beach Energy rising 1.96% while Santos gained 0.41%. Shares of Inpex in Japan also jumped 1.78%. In Hong Kong, shares of CNOOC climbed 1.56%, as of their final hour of trading.
Oil prices surged to multiyear highs on Monday after talks between OPEC and its oil-producing allies, known as OPEC+, were postponed indefinitely following a failure by the group to reach on agreement on production policy for August and beyond.
The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 92.04 — off levels above 92.4 seen late last week.
The Japanese yen traded at 110.89 per dollar after an earlier low of 110.97 against the greenback.
— EuroJournal’s Pippa Stevens contributed to this report.