Fast Asia Open: Australia consumer inflation, Japan machine tool orders

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Another day, another executive order from Donald Trump blocked by a US federal court.

On Tuesday a federal judge in San Francisco granted a nationwide injunction against President Donald Trump’s executive order on sanctuary cities on the grounds that it is unconstitutional, in another legal setback for the administration that will prevent the order from being enforced while its legal merits are debated.

As with earlier court rulings rejecting Mr Trump’s controversial travel ban, the sanctuary cities decision underscores the damage Mr Trump’s own words have done to his legal position.

“The statements of the president, his press secretary and the attorney-general belie the government’s argument in the briefing that the order does not change the law,” the judge ruled. “They have repeatedly indicated an intent to defund sanctuary jurisdictions in compliance with the executive order.”

Markets had a much better Tuesday, as lingering optimism on the European political front and the prospect of US tax reforms supported further gains for global stocks and the euro as haven assets such as Treasuries, the yen and gold remained out of favour. The S&P 500 neared a record closing high and the tech-focused Nasdaq closed above the 6,000 level for the first time.

In Asia Pacific equities, futures tip Sydney’s S&P/ASX 200 index to climb 0.4 per cent at the open as Australia returns from Monday’s market holiday, while in Tokyo the Topix is set to climb 0.6 per cent and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng is expected to rise 0.3 per cent when trading begins.

Corporate earnings reports out today include Canon, Yahoo Japan, Line, China Minsheng Banking, Anhui Conch Cement, Huatai Securities, BBMG Corp, CapitaLand, Fujitsu General, Japan Aviation, Hitachi Kokusai Electric and Hitachi Construction.

The economic calendar for Wednesday is locked and loaded (all times Hong Kong):

  • 09.30: Australia Q1 consumer price index
  • 12.30: Japan all industry activity index
  • 13.00: Singapore industrial production
  • 14.00: Japan machine tool orders (final)
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