9 Feb 2009

Mixed start to week for markets

9:21 pm on 9 February 2009

Markets in the Asia-Pacific region were mixed at the start of the trading week.

Japanese share prices closed 1.33% lower on Monday, reversing earlier gains as bargain-hunters looked for lucrative deals.

The Tokyo Stock Exchange's benchmark Nikkei-225 index fell 107.59 points to end at 7,969.03.

The broader Topix index of all first-section shares fell 11.94 points, or 1.51%, to 778.90.

The New Zealand benchmark index was also lower, falling 7 points, or 0.25%, to close at 2766 on a market turnover of $121 million.

In Australia, the share market closed just over 1% higher following strong gains from the banks and a resources sector boosted by firmer commodity prices.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index closed 38.7 points, or 1.12%, higher at 3508.6, while the broader All Ordinaries gained 38.3 points, or 1.12%, to 3445.8.


Oil prices hovered near $US40 a barrel on Monday in Asia as investors weighed a massive stimulus package and a bank rescue plan from the United States this week against soaring unemployment and falling demand for crude.

Light, sweet crude for March delivery fell 16 cents to $US40.01 a barrel by afternoon in Singapore on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

The spot price of gold closed in trading at $US907.70 an ounce, down $US6.60 on Friday's local close of $US914.30 an ounce.