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Japan markets set to rise at the open; Australia’s fourth-quarter GDP data ahead

SINGAPORE — Stocks in Japan were set to rise at the Wednesday open as investors in Asia-Pacific await the release of Australia’s fourth-quarter gross domestic product data.

Futures pointed to a higher open for Japanese stocks, with the Nikkei futures contract in Chicago at 29,525 while its counterpart in Osaka was at 29,550. That compared against the Nikkei 225’s last close at 29,408.17.

Shares in Australia advanced in morning trade as the S&P/ASX 200 edged about 0.3% higher.

Data ahead

On the economic data front, Australia’s fourth-quarter GDP print is expected to be out around 8:30 a.m. HK/SIN.

A private survey on China’s services sector activity in February is also expected on Wednesday, with the Caixin/Markit services Purchasing Managers’ Index set to be out around 9:45 a.m. HK/SIN.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 90.812 — off levels above 91 seen earlier in the week.

The Japanese yen traded at 106.77 per dollar, still weaker than levels below 105.7 against the greenback seen last week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7818, following levels around $0.774 seen yesterday.

Here’s a look at what’s on tap:

  • Australia: Fourth-quarter GDP print at 8:30 a.m. HK/SIN
  • China: Caixin/Markit services Purchasing Managers’ Index at 9:45 a.m. HK/SIN

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— CNBC’s Kevin Breuninger contributed to this report.


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