Japan’s shares rose around 2%, leading gains in Asia ahead of the Fed’s key interest rate decision

2 hours ago

Health care and economic conditions are driving the Hang Seng higher

The Hang Seng Index led gains in the Asia-Pacific region on Wednesday, driven by healthcare and consumer cyclical stocks.

Shares in Geely saw the biggest moves, up 7.16% after the automaker posted a 45.6% year-on-year revenue increase for the full 2022 and an 8.5% rise in profits.

Wuxi Biologics and Country Garden Holdings were also among the biggest gainers, advancing 4.68% and 5.43% respectively.

— Lim Hui Jie

2 hours ago

It will be “very difficult” for VCs and startups to find another bank like SVB: Race Capital

It will be very difficult for venture capital firms and startups to find another bank as startup-friendly as the fallen Silicon Valley Bank, US-based venture capital firm Race Capital said.

“SVB wasn’t just another bank around the corner. They were really the bedrock of Silicon Valley,” Race Capital general partner Edith Yeung said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” Wednesday.

SVB was Race Capital’s primary bank and two of its portfolio companies had 100% funds in SVB, Yeung said.

“If you’re a startup entrepreneur, you may be able to find another bank to hold your funds,” she said.

“But going forward, it’s definitely very, very difficult to find a bank that’s that startup-friendly, and be able to provide venture debt to many, many startups. This applies to startups in Silicon Valley and China,” she added.

– Sheila Chiang

2 hours ago

CNBC Pro: A long-term bear is ‘creeping back’ to tech — and has some picks to play it

Tech investor Paul Meeks has been bearish on technology for some time, but is finally starting to warm up to the sector.

“I’m creeping back into the sector after a long time advocating an underweight position in it,” he told CNBC on Friday. He joins a chorus of investors who have become more bullish on the sector in recent weeks.

Professional subscribers can read more about Meeks’ best stock picks here.

— Zavier Ong

3 hours ago

China will exploit the position to win from a vulnerable Russia, say analysts

Chinese President Xi Jinping will soon end his visit to Russia, and analysts say Beijing will use its strong position to make gains from President Vladimir Putin.

“Putin is weak, coming into these negotiations from real vulnerability,” said Timothy Ash, emerging markets strategist at BlueBay Asset Management, adding that he wondered “what price Xi will take to save Putin … he has to get something out of it.”

Overall, China has an upper hand economically over Russia, said Alicja Bachulska, a fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations. “If China supports Russia in a more significant way, this will continue even more,” she added.

Read the whole story here.

— Yeo Boon Ping, Holly Ellyatt

3 hours ago

CNBC Pro: Morgan Stanley is ‘purely bullish’ on Asian emerging market stocks

Morgan Stanley says it’s “time to get bullish” on Asia and emerging market growth stocks.

While markets may be pricing in a rate hike at the Federal Reserve’s March meeting, many also expect rate cuts later this year. Easing economic conditions should benefit growth stocks, the strategists said.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Jihye Lee, Christine Wang

3 hours ago

Nike says sales in China fell 8% in the holiday quarter

Nike reported that sales in China fell 8% in the holiday quarter, even as the country ended its zero-Covid policy.

The sportswear giant reported revenue in Greater China totaled $1.99 billion in the quarter ended Feb. 28. That’s lower than Wall Street expectations for $2.09 billion, according to StreetAccount consensus estimates.

Still, Nike CEO John Donahoe remained upbeat, saying the company saw growth “really pick up” in the second month of the quarter as Covid controls eased.

“The fundamentals of this market are good, right? It’s a very big market that’s growing. Sports and wellness is a key trend and tailwind there. There’s a desire for innovation and style. And the key to winning in this market is simply put. : have great innovation and connect with Chinese consumers in a locally relevant way,” Donahoe said.

Shares of Nike fell 2.25% in the after-hours session.

— Christine Wang, Gabrielle Fonrouge

4 hours ago

The Topix jumps as much as 2% in early trade, led by financials

Other names leading the index also included carmaker Toyota, investment manager Softbank and technology company Sony.

— Lim Hui Jie

3 hours ago

CNBC Pro: Exxon vs. Chevron? Goldman Sachs reveals its favorite – and other energy picks

17 hours ago

The government can stop more deposits if necessary, says Finance Minister Yellen

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Tuesday that although the authorities believe they have taken sufficient measures to stop liquidity problems in the banking sector, the government is prepared to guarantee even more deposits if the banking crisis worsens.

“The steps we took were not focused on helping specific banks or classes of banks. Our intervention was necessary to protect the broader US banking system,” she said in remarks prepared for a speech to the American Bankers Association. “And similar actions may be warranted if smaller institutions suffer from deposit runs that pose the risk of contagion.”

– Tanaya Machel, Jeff Cox

14 hours ago

First Republic leads regional bank stock rally

Shares of First Republic rose more than 38% on Tuesday morning. The move marks a reversal of the bank’s losses yesterday, after Standard & Poor’s cut its credit rating again at the weekend. Investors are optimistic after Janet Yellen’s assurances early Tuesday.

Shares of other US regional banks continued to be in the green. Shares in PacWest Bancorp rose around 15.7%. Zion’s Bancorp. and KeyCorp rose 5.3% and 5.8%, respectively. New York Community Bancorp. rose 1.8% and Fifth Third Bancorp rose 3.8%.

—Pia Singh

10 hours ago

Major bank chiefs are meeting in Washington to discuss First Republic, Reuters reports

CEOs from major banks, including JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon and Bank of America’s Brian Moynihan, are meeting in Washington on Tuesday for a two-day planned gathering, Reuters reported, citing sources familiar with the matter.

First Republic Bank, which has been under pressure due to its large share of uninsured deposits, will be discussed at the meeting, Reuters reported.

– Yun Li

13 hours ago

The Fed’s 2% inflation target is “unlikely” to happen in 2023, according to Insight Investment

As the Federal Reserve looks to announce its latest monetary policy decision on Wednesday, Insight Investment believes inflation will remain high in 2023.

“The 2% inflation target is unlikely to be realized in 2023, but there is some hope that we could see a more normal inflation environment by 2024,” Brendan Murphy, head of North America core income, wrote in a Tuesday note.

“As the lagged effect of the Fed’s policy rate hikes along with the more recent tightening of financial conditions related to banking sector concerns work their way through the economy, the effects are likely to be disinflationary. These same conditions pose many risks to the growth picture,” Murphy added.

Insight Investment expects the central bank to raise interest rates by 25 basis points on Wednesday, but added that “the recent market volatility may be an opportunity for them to pause at this meeting.”

“The case for a pause is strong as another 25bp increase could be seen as contributing to market volatility and financial instability,” Murphy said.

“But not delivering at 25bps could cause some to question the Fed’s resolve to lower inflation, which could create a whole new set of problems. Pausing could lead to easing of financial conditions that counter their inflation targets.”

– Hakyung Kim

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