Asian Market Update – Wednesday: Bitcoin Down After Market Sets New All-Time High

Bitcoin market

The Big Question: How will increased institutional interest drive prices in the near term?

Bitcoin lost some ground during Asian trading on Wednesday following yesterday’s rally, but is nowhere near erasing the gains from yesterday. As of midday in Asia, prices were down by about 1.15 percent to $6,360 for the day.

It is reported that increased institutional interest may be one of the driving forces behind the most recent rally, following reports that CME Group is planning on listing bitcoin futures contracts on its exchange before the end of the year. This also opens the door for bitcoin ETF listings later, as the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has previously stated that a futures listing is a requirement in order for a bitcoin ETF to be approved at a later time.

The positive news on bitcoin comes at the same time as industry insiders are speculating on whether China could be looking at allowing cryptocurrency trading again.

As bitcoin made new highs, litecoin and ethereum did not do much at all. Litecoin Wednesday morning traded unchanged after another slow day yesterday, remaining steady at $55.40.

Ethereum was also nearly unchanged during the Asian trading session on Wednesday, losing a slight 0.06 percent to trade just above the $300 level.

Main Market Movers – Mid-day Asian Trading Session

Indexes Value at Midday Daily Change
Japan- Nikkei 225 22,390 1.72%
China-Shanghai Composite Index 3,389 -0.08%
South Korea-KOSPI 2,550 1.05%
Hong Kong –Hang Seng 28,476 0.82%
Australia-ASX 200 5,937 0.49%

Stocks

Investors had a good day in Asia on Wednesday with most major stock indexes trading up. Japan led the gains on expectations of strong global growth and US tax cuts. Investors also have high expectations to Trump’s pick for the next chair of the Federal Reserve, which is said to be announced Thursday.

After midday in Tokyo trading, the Nikkei was up by 1.72 percent to 22.390.

Meanwhile, South Korea’s Kospi Index also saw gains of more than 1 percent, trading up by 1.05 percent to 2,550.

Mainland China’s Shanghai Composite was the only loser among the major indexes on Wednesday morning, trading down by a slight 0.08 percent to 3,389 as of midday in China. Shares in Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index tacked on 0.82 percent to 28,476 in Hong Kong trading.

Down under, the ASX 200 Index gained a slight 0.49 percent on Wednesday, trading at 5.937 as the trading day was coming to an end in Australia.

Currencies

The Japanese yen on Wednesday lost 0.23 percent against the US dollar, trading at 113.90 per dollar.

The Chinese yuan gained 0.13 percent on the US dollar to change hands at 6.6200 per dollar.

The Australian dollar also gained 0.13 percent on the US dollar during Australian trading on Wednesday, changing hands at 1.3042 per US dollar.

Commodities

WTI Oil gained a slight 0.05 percent to $54.63.

Brent Crude made an equal gain to trade at $61.17.

Gold gained 0.23 percent to $1,273 per ounce.

Business News across Asia

In China, state-run newspaper Global Times is reporting that President Trump can expect a “State visit-plus experience” when he arrives in Beijing for his first official visit to China on November 8. The Chinese are reportedly interested in giving Mr. Trump the best experience while he is in China to show their “sincerity in laying down a long-term development plan for Sino-US ties”

Take-away: Trump is travelling to China as part of his five-country Asian tour that also includes Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, and the Philippines. North Korea is expected to be the main issue during discussions, with some speculating Trump will use a possible trade deal with China as a bargaining chip.

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.