Picture used for illustrative purpose. File
Asian markets mostly fell Monday with sentiment depressed by a spike in coronavirus infections that has forced fresh lockdowns and sparked worries about the impact on the world economy.
Japan's Nikkei 225 rose more than two percent as investors picked up cheap stocks following a steep drop last week, while there was also some cheer in data showing the country's economy contracted less than first thought in January-March.
Shanghai put on 1.8 percent following a forecast-beating reading on factory activity from Caixin, days after a strong official report showed improvement in the manufacturing sector. Seoul edged up slightly.
A lack of substantial progress by US lawmakers on a new stimulus package is also frustrating traders, while China-US tensions continued as the White House considers measures against Chinese tech firms, citing national security.
With the disease showing no sign of easing globally -- total cases topped 18 million Monday -- governments are moving to reimpose containment measures.
Australia's Victoria state imposed fresh, sweeping restrictions Sunday, including a curfew in Melbourne for the next six weeks, a ban on wedding gatherings, and an order that schools and universities go back online in the coming days.
Britain introduced new measures in several northern counties at the end of last week, while there are reports the government is considering fresh moves to avert another economically painful national lockdown, including sealing off London.
The new wave of infections has fanned fears that a nascent economic recovery will be knocked off track.
"COVID-19 either remains rampant or is making worrying localised comebacks across the world," said Jeffrey Halley at OANDA.
"Although not priced into financial markets yet, it remains the critical risk factor to global recovery. Particularly if key economies that had previously controlled COVID-19 are forced back into large scale lockdowns again."
Asian stock markets were mostly higher Tuesday after Wall Street rose on a flurry of corporate deals and China's economic activity improved. Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seoul gained, while Tokyo retreated.
Most Asian markets fell Monday following another disappointing performance on Wall Street with investors growing concerned about an uptick in coronavirus infections in Europe and the United States, as well as the lack of movement in Washington on a new stimulus.
The MSCI index is also set for its biggest weekly drop since March, down more than 4% so far this week. Chinese blue-chips dropped 1.6%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 1.7%, Seoul's KOSPI sank 2.59% and Australian shares fell 0.81%.
Japan's Nikkei declined 1.11%.
Tokyo is leading the Asian market with gains jumping 1.7 per cent while Sydney piled on 0.9 per cent. Euro Stoxx 50 futures fell 0.9% at 06:56 GMT, while German DAX futures shed 0.7% and UK's FTSE futures lost 0.5%.
Emirates and flydubai airlines will have a combined network of 168 destinations by the end of May, offering more convenience, choice and seamless connectivity for travellers across their combined network.
The World Economic Forum cancelled its 2021 annual meeting scheduled for Singapore in three months’ time on Monday, saying it was not possible to hold such a large, global event due to COVID-19.
The Republic of San Marino for the first time ever showcases the unique attractions and heritage in the UAE during the Arabian Travel Market (ATM).
Abu Dhabi Exports Office (ADEX), the export-financing arm of Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD), has signed a $30 million (Dhs110.19 million) line-of-credit agreement with the Eastern and Southern African Trade and Development Bank (TDB)