Asian Equities: KOSDAQ Up 3.02%, Down 42% YTD

Asian equities were mostly higher today, though trading was light. South Korea's KOSDAQ index was up 3.02%, though it remains down 42% for the year to date.

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Asian equities were broadly higher on light volumes as South Korea’s growth stock exchange the KOSDAQ +3.02% though down -42% YTD. Hong Kong traders returned to their holiday after yesterday’s strong move as volumes plummeted and stocks posted small declines on profit-taking. It is positive to see that Asian equities are broadly higher despite light volumes, with South Korea's KOSDAQ index up 3.02% for the day.

It was a mixed day for stocks in Hong Kong, with some of the biggest names in the market seeing share prices fall while others rose. Tencent, Alibaba, and AIA were all down on the day, while Meituan saw its share price rise by 1.26%. CALB's IPO was flat, which many took as a positive sign. Short selling volume dropped by 45% from the previous day, with Tencent, Alibaba, and all seeing their short volumes fall. Meituan was the only stock to see an increase in short selling, with 38% of total volume coming from short sellers. Overall, it was a lacklustre day for the Hong Kong market, with no real direction from Southbound Stock Connect trading.

With travel stocks doing well today, it appears that Mainland Chinese tourism is strong. However, CIFI, a troubled real estate developer, was down another 15%. This company's market cap is now only $866 million, compared to $7 billion back in February. Many other real estate companies will likely be dropped from global indices later this year. The US dollar has strengthened overnight, but the Asia dollar index has still gained against the US dollar. China's offshore currency has remained at 7.06 after appreciating from 7.17 to 7.06 over the last week.

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The Hong Kong stock market had a negative day, with the Hang Seng and Hang Seng Tech both declining. Volume was down significantly, by 40.74%, and this was reflected in the short sale turnover, which declined by 45.79%. Growth stocks outperformed value stocks, and large caps outperformed small caps. The only positive sectors were materials and energy, while healthcare, real estate, and utilities were among the worst performers.

Shanghai, Shenzhen, and STAR Board are closed for the remainder of the year.

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Last night's exchange rates, prices, and yields

There is not much to say about mainland China's fixed-income and currency markets overnight since they were closed. However, it is worth noting that the Chinese government has been working hard to stabilize its economy and financial markets in recent months.