Australia markets closed

Steady Opening of Asian Markets following record-high of U.S markets - Asian markets opened slightly down Friday morning after U.S. markets hit records high on Thursday on news that the House of Representatives voted to pass a deal to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

China’s Shanghai Composite fell 0.05% by 09:13 PM ET (02:13 GMT), the Shenzhen Component was unchanged.

Sino-U.S. trade news continued to be in focus, with phase one of the U.S.-China trade deal undergoing legal and technical reviews.

“It looks like on the tariff side, the phase one deal has taken some risk of escalation off the table for 2020. Markets have priced that in clearly,” Shaun Roache, S&P Global Ratings’ APAC chief economist, said in a note.

Remarks to be given by Chinese President Xi Jinping on the 20th anniversary of the handover of Macau to Chinese rule are also in the spotlight today.

Analysts expect president Xi's announcements to address changes of economic policies of the special administrative region of Macau, whose economy highly relies on the gambling sector.

Some see the changes to be announced by President Xi as a reward of Macau´s loyalty to Mainland China, in contrast with Hong Kong´s attitude towards Beijing, and the protests and civil unrest that have hit the city during the past few months.

"The chief executives and principal government officials of the special administrative region and the principals of the legislature and the judiciary have all been patriots," Li Zhanshu, the National People's Congress chairman said in a speech earlier this month.

Also, today the People’s Bank of China is due to announce the monthly fixing of its loan prime rate.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 0.32%.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 traded 0.28% lower. South Korea’s KOSPI was up 0.16%.

Down under, Australia’s ASX 200 slipped 0.27%.

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