Asian Market Update – Monday: Bitcoin shoots for $10,000; Asian stocks in negative territory

Bitcoin skyrockets

The countdown to $10,000 has started.

Prices of main cryptocurrencies surged Monday morning in Asian trading, with bitcoin nearing in on the $10,000 level that many have predicted we will see this year.

Bitcoin added 3.5 percent to $9,738 before midday in Asia in very active trading with the price surging by the second. Bitcoin has been on a solid upswing since Friday, emerging from about $8,000 to near the milestone $10,000 mark.

Most traders agree it’s now just a question of how soon bitcoin will surge right past $10,000, while a few others remain skeptical and have started to scale back their position in bitcoin.

The price of ethereum also surged by more than 3 percent to $488 before midday in Asia. Ethereum has seen a huge gain in price over the weekend and is shooting for the psychologically important $500 mark at the time of writing.

The price of litecoin is also gaining strongly Monday morning, adding 3.02 percent to $92 around midday. Litecoin has remained above the $80 since Saturday and, despite fluctuations, the momentum has proved to be solid. Litecoin is currently closing in on its all-time-high from September this year with strong momentum.

With the strong gains over the weekend, bitcoin is now the world’s 30th largest currency, after its market cap skyrocketed to $157 billion in November from $15 billion in January, placing it ahead currencies in countries such as Singapore and the United Arab Emirates, CCN reported.

Main Market Movers – Mid-day Asian Trading Session

Indexes Value at Midday Daily Change
Japan- Nikkei 225 22,482 -0.31%
China-Shanghai Composite Index 3,326 -0.81%
Hong Kong –Hang Seng 29,741 -0.42%
South Korea-KOSPI 2,509 -1.37%
Australia-ASX 200 5,980 -0.03%
S&P 500 E-Mini Futures 2,598 -0.10%

Most major Asian equities markets were in negative territory on Monday morning, with big losses seen on the Chinese mainland and South Korea.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 was down 0.31 percent to 22, 482 at midday on Monday.

On the Chinese mainland, the Shanghai Composite Index was off 0.81 percent to about 3,326 before midday. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index lost 0.42 percent to around 29,741 before midday.

The Mainland Chinese market continued to be shaky after the Shanghai Composite saw its biggest single day loss of the year on Thursday, following a slew of government measures to rein in the burgeoning small online lending sector in a wide drive to fend off financial risks, shattering investor confidence.

In South Korea, the Kospi lost 1.37 percent to around 2,509 shortly before midday. Shares of tech firms including Samsung Electronics slumped in Seoul as market participants feared the demand for tech products such as semiconductors could slip.

Down under, the ASX 200 was down 0.03 percent to 5,980.

The S&P 500 E-Mini Futures was down 0.1 percent to 2,598 at midday.

Currencies

The Japanese yen gained 0.11 percent the US dollar at midday Monday to 111.37 per dollar.

The Chinese yuan was flat against the US dollar at 6.5995 per dollar.

The Australian dollar lost 0.09 percent on the dollar, changing hands at 1.3146 per dollar at midday.

Commodities

WTI Oil was down 0.44 percent to $58.69 per barrel.

Brent Crude lost 0.20 percent to $63.84 per barrel.

Gold was up 0.13 percent to $1,289 an ounce.

News across Asia

In Indonesia, the government raised the alert for a volcano eruption in the popular tourist island of Bali to the highest level on Monday, meaning there is “imminent” risk of a bigger eruption. The eruption started on Sunday and has already led to the closure of the airport, while residents rush to find shelter.

In China, profits for Chinese industrial firms continued to rise at a fast pace in October, fresh data showed on Monday. The national statistics office said that industrial profits of major firms rose 25.1 percent year-on-year to about $112.9 billion in October.

Take away: The profit growth was boosted by solid commodities prices, analysts said, but many are still less-than-optimistic about the overall performance of the world’s second-largest economy given its increasing debt level.

Featured image from Pixabay.

Author:
Fredrik Vold is an entrepreneur, financial writer, and technical analysis enthusiast. He has been working and traveling in Asia for several years, and is currently based out of Beijing, China. He closely follows stocks, forex and cryptocurrencies, and is always looking for the next great alternative investment opportunity.