Asia-Pacific markets in positive territory; RBA expects inflation to peak by year-end

SINGAPORE — Asia-Pacific markets looked set to open mixed on Tuesday while bitcoin continued to rise after a recent rebound. Meanwhile, Australia’s central bank is poised to release meeting minutes in the morning.

In Japan markets, the Nikkei futures contract in Chicago was at 26,065 while its counterpart in Osaka was at 25,990. That compared against the Nikkei 225’s last close at 25,771.22.

In Australia, SPI futures were at 6,388, lower than the S&P/ASX 200‘s last close at 6,433.40.

Ahead of the Reserve Bank of Australia’s meeting minutes release, RBA governor Philip Lowe will speak on inflation and monetary policy.

Elsewhere, European Central bank President Christine Lagarde reiterated plans to raise the ECB’s interest rates twice this summer, and stressed its 2% inflation target, according to Reuters.

“These decisions underpin our previous commitments to adjust all of our instruments within our mandate, incorporating flexibility if warranted, to ensure that inflation stabilizes at our 2% target over the medium term,” Lagarde said, according to the report.

U.S. markets are set to return to trade on Tuesday after a holiday on Monday. The major averages last week suffered their 10th losing week in 11 on fears that the central bank will hike rates aggressively to tame inflation at the risk of causing an economic downturn. The S&P 500 dropped 5.8% last week for its biggest weekly loss since March 2020, dipping deeper into bear market territory.

The world’s largest cryptocurrency bitcoin rose on Monday after falling below its 2017 high over the weekend. It climbed above the $20,000 mark for much of the day. On Tuesday during Asia trading hours, bitcoin last rose 2.74% to around $20,638, according to Coin Metrics data.


The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 104.70.

The Japanese yen traded at 135.11 per dollar weakening from levels above 134. The Australian dollar was at $0.6961, still soft against last week’s trade of above $0.70.

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