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Asian shares largely maintained a steady course on Wednesday in anticipation of tech heavyweight Nvidia’s earnings, with the sector’s high ratings at risk due to a surge in bond yields. Meanwhile, disappointing factory data from Japan left market sentiment fragile.

Key Points:

  • S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq futures saw an increase of 0.3% and 0.4% respectively.
  • MSCI’s broad index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose by a marginal 0.1%, hovering just above its nine-month low from two days prior.
  • Japan’s Nikkei edged up by a scant 0.2%.
  • In contrast, the United States’ flash PMI readings are likely to indicate continued contraction in the factory sector.
  • Chinese shares retreated slightly, with blue-chips down 0.7% after Monday’s 0.8% rebound, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index slipping 0.1% following a 1% leap.
  • Financial shares underperformed particularly S&P 500 banks, which slid 2.4% after Moody’s and S&P downgraded several regional U.S. lenders.
  • The U.S. dollar remains near its two-month high against a basket of major currencies, while the yen strengthened slightly amid speculation of potential Japanese market intervention.

Investors are eagerly awaiting chip company Nvidia’s results following an impressive report last quarter that sparked a tech stock rally and bolstered hopes for artificial intelligence.

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