Asian shares seen cautious on surging COVID-19 cases
Asian share markets were seen subdued on Monday. Investors’ downbeat sentiment could be attributed to an increase in coronavirus cases and as pessimism grew over the ability of vaccine makers to provide the pledged doses on time.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was seen inactive. The index placed below its record peak of 727.31 touched last week. While there was a drop, it still placed 8.5% higher in January. Japan’s benchmark index plunged 0.1%, while shares down under traded positively as the country’s drug regulator approved the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.
Coronavirus cases across the globe will soon breach 100 million, with recorded mortality already at 2 million. However, optimism brought by vaccines and a brisk economic recovery kept financial markets buoyant.