Private survey shows that Chinese factory activity is shrinking in August

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SINGAPORE – Asia Pacific stocks were mixed in trading Wednesday morning as a private poll in August showed declining Chinese factory activity.

Mainland stocks were mixed, as the Shanghai composite gained 0.19% while the Shenzhen component fell 0.947%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was hovering slightly higher.

The Caixin / Markit manufacturing purchasing managers index for August was 49.2 on Wednesday, below the 50 mark that separates expansion and contraction.

It came after the official manufacturing PMI released on Monday showed slower growth in Chinese factory activity in August, trading at 50.1 from its 50.4 level in July.

PMI values ‚Äč‚Äčabove 50 indicate expansion, while those below this value indicate contraction. The PMI readings are sequential and represent a monthly expansion or contraction.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 was up 0.96% while the Topix index was up 0.84%. Meanwhile, the South Korean Kospi was down 0.19%.

Australian stocks also fell as the S & P / ASX 200 fell 0.6%. Australia’s gross domestic product rose 0.7% in the June quarter, according to data released by the country’s statistics bureau. According to Reuters, this was above expectations for an increase of 0.5%.

MSCI’s broadest index for Asia Pacific stocks outside of Japan was down 0.19%.

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Overnight, the US S&P 500 fell 0.13% to 4,522.68 while the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 39.11 points to 35,360.73. The Nasdaq Composite declined slightly to around 15,259.24.

Currencies and oil

The US dollar index, which tracks the greenback versus a basket of its competitors, stood at 92.74 after recently rebounding from around 92.4.

The Japanese yen was trading at 110.17 per dollar, below its 109.8 level against the greenback at the beginning of the week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $ 0.7317 after climbing below $ 0.73 yesterday.

Oil prices were higher on the morning of Asian trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude oil futures rising 0.4% to $ 71.92 a barrel. US crude oil futures rose 0.38% to $ 68.76 a barrel.