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Asian Markets Mixed; RBA Minutes, Sino-U.S. Trade Development in Focus

Investing.com - Asian markets were mixed in morning trade on Tuesday. Minutes from the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) July policy meeting and the latest developments on the Sino-U.S. trade front were in focus.

China’s Shanghai Composite and the Shenzhen Component were down 0.2% and 0.1% respectively by 10:45 PM ET (02:45 GMT). Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index slipped 0.1%.

On the Sino-U.S. trade front, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer will reportedly travel to Beijing for trade negotiations if talks by phone this week are productive, according to Bloomberg.

Meanwhile, U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted that the weak Chinese second-quarter GDP showed companies are leaving the country for non-tariffed countries, asserting that China wants to make a trade deal.

On Monday, China reported that its Q2 GDP growth fell to a 27-year low.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 was down 0.8%, while South Korea’s KOSPI inched up 0.1%.

On Monday, South Korean President Moon Jae-in warned Japan that any attempt to hinder his nation’s economic growth “will not succeed.”

“We will overcome this situation in whatever scenario,” Moon said. “South Korea has come this far by enduring even tougher challenges than this.”

Japan imposed export restrictions on South Korea’s semiconductor industry earlier this month.

“Japan’s export curbs are different from the traditional protectionist trade measures, as well as in purpose,” Moon said. “These measures break the frame of economic cooperation between South Korea and Japan that has been growing on interdependency and common growth for half a century.”

Down under, Australia’s ASX 200 gained 0.1%.

Minutes from the RBA’s monetary policy meeting in July showed the central bank was ready to adjust interest rates if required.

“The Board would continue to monitor developments in the labour market closely and adjust monetary policy if needed to support sustainable growth in the economy and the achievement of the inflation target over time,” the minutes showed. “Lower interest rates would provide more Australians with jobs and assist with achieving more assured progress towards the inflation target.”

The central bank already cut its cash rate to a new all-time low of 1% earlier this month.

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