Market Talk – Friday, Sept. 18


China’s ByteDance is planning a U.S. initial public offering of TikTok Global, the new company that will operate the popular short video app, should its proposed deal be cleared by the U.S. government, Reuters reported. ByteDance is racing to clinch an agreement with the White House that will stave off a U.S. ban on TikTok that President Donald Trump has threatened could happen as early as next week.

Indian automakers should reduce royalty payments to foreign partners to bring down costs instead of seeking tax cuts, a finance ministry official said on Thursday, days after reports that Toyota would halt expansion in the country due to high taxes. Having suffered a 50% fall in passenger vehicle sales in the five months through August as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, automakers have lobbied the government to lower taxes. Taxes on cars sold in India are as high as 28% and after additional levies can rise to up to 50% for some models. The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) has urged the government to cut the tax on cars, motorbikes and buses to 18% while warning that it would take three to four years for sales to return to their peak levels of 2018.

Japan’s core consumer prices fell at their fastest pace in almost four years in August, dragged mostly by government-sponsored discounts for domestic travel aimed at supporting the battered tourism sector. The core consumer price index (CPI), which includes oil products but excludes volatile fresh food prices, fell 0.4% in August from a year earlier, government data showed on Friday.

Japan’s new premier Yoshihide Suga on Wednesday pledged to contain COVID-19 and retain his former boss’s “Abenomics” growth policies while pushing reforms such as deregulation and digitalization.

The major Asian stock markets had a mixed day today:

  • NIKKEI 225 increased 40.93 points or 0.18% to 23,360.30
  • Shanghai increased 67.65 points or 2.07% to 3,338.09
  • Hang Seng increased 114.56 points or 0.47% to 24,455.41
  • ASX 200 decreased 18.70 points or -0.32% to 5,864.50
  • Kospi increased 6.23 points or 0.26% to 2,412.40
  • SENSEX decreased 134.03 points or -0.34% to 38,845.82
  • Nifty50 decreased 11.15 points or -0.10% to 11,504.95
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