Asian markets broadly rose on Wednesday as wary investors tracked losses on Wall Street and elsewhere as a surge of the coronavirus Delta variant stoked fears the global economic recovery was at risk.
A fresh lockdown in New Zealand and a curfew imposed in Australia’s second-largest city of Melbourne over a Delta outbreak have added to concerns about lockdowns and travel restrictions in China, the world’s second-largest economy.
A lacklustre US retail sales report also exacerbated worries about the latest Covid-19 wave, bringing Wall Street’s streak of five straight records for the Dow and S&P 500 indices to a stuttering halt.
Tracking those losses, markets opened flat before rising Wednesday in Tokyo, where the grim global picture was made worse by the government’s decision to extend a state of emergency in the Japanese capital and other areas as the nation struggled to control a surging wave of infections.
“Investors continue to believe that economic normali sation will be delayed because of the spread of the coronavirus.”—AFP