Asia markets October 2: Global economy, oil, currencies

Stocks in Asia were poised to open lower on Wednesday on renewed fears of a global economic slowdown.Futures pointed to a lower open for Japanese shares, with the Nikkei futures contract in Chicago at 21,730 and its counterpart in Osaka at 21,670. The Nikkei 225 last closed at 21,885.24.Australian stocks were also set to slip at the open. The SPI futures contract was at 6,653.0, as compared to the S&P/ASX 200’s last close at 6,742.80.Investors will watch for reaction to new data that renewed fears of a slowing global economy. The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said U.S. manufacturing activity contracted to its worst level since June 2009. That report came on the back of the release of weak manufacturing data from Europe.”The very weak ISM, weak levels of (capital expenditure) plans, and inversion of parts of the US yield curve suggests a growing risk the US economy falls into recession,” Joseph Capurso, senior currency strategist at Commonwealth Bank of Australia, wrote in a note.Hong Kong retail sales data for August is expected to be released later today at 4:30 p.m. HK/SIN. The sector has taken a hit amid protracted protests in the city that have lasted for months and periodically degenerated into violence.Markets in China and India are closed on Wednesday for holidays. Asia-Pacific Market Indexes ChartCurrenciesThe U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was last at 99.128 after falling from levels above 99.5 yesterday.The Japanese yen, often seen as a safe-haven currency in times of market turmoil, traded at 107.72 against the dollar after strengthening from levels above 108.0 in the previous session. The Australian dollar was at $0.6703 after falling from highs above $0.675 yesterday.What’s on tap:Hong Kong: Retail sales data for August at 4:30 p.m. HK/SIN— CNBC’s Fred Imbert contributed to this report.

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