Asia-Pacific markets trade mixed as the region starts off in 2023


To begin the first trading week of the year, markets in the Asia-Pacific region traded mixed.

On the first trading day of 2023, the S&P/ASX 200 in Australia decreased by 1.31 percent to 6,946.2. In Asia’s afternoon session, the Kosdaq gained 0.51 percent to 674.95, while South Korea’s Kospi also fell 0.31 to 2,218.68.

In the final hour of trading, the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong gained 1.71 percent, leading gains in the region. The mainland Shanghai Composite gained 0.88 percent to 3,116.51, and the Shenzhen Component gained 0.92 percent to 11,117.13.

Factory activity continued to decline in response to rising Covid infections, as indicated by the Caixin purchasing managers’ index. Business confidence in the 12-month output outlook improved to the highest level since February, according to the survey.

Nikkei reported over the weekend that the Bank of Japan is reportedly considering raising its inflation forecasts in January in order to get closer to the central bank’s goal of 2% inflation in fiscal years 2023 and 2024.

Major U.S. indexes ended 2022 with their worst losses since 2008, snapping a three-year winning streak for each. The year’s losses were 19.4% for the S&P 500, 33.1% for the Nasdaq, and 8.8% for the Dow.

According to Reuters, which cited an internal company post of reporting lines, Tesla has appointed Tom Zhu, its China chief, to oversee the company’s North American sales operations and assembly plants in the United States.

According to the news agency, Tesla’s internal organizational chart showed that Zhu’s reporting lines effectively make him a deputy to CEO Elon Musk, focusing on global sales and output management, while keeping vehicle design and development separate.

Reuters added that Zhu will be reported to by directors of the Texas Gigafactory, the senior director of its Fremont factory, vice presidents leading Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, and vice president of North American sales Troy Jones.

Sales, service, and deliveries in North America will be handled by Zhu.

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