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Asian Equities Slip; Earnings, China GDP In Focus

Asian equities slipped in morning trade on Tuesday – Asian equities slipped in morning trade on Tuesday. Investors’ attention now turned to first quarter earnings and China’s GDP report due at 10PM ET (02:00 GMT) as geopolitical tensions eased. Traders also look ahead to a speech by the incoming head of the New York Fed John Williams later this week.

Economists expect China's economic growth to slow to 6.5% this year, while maintaining a more upbeat view of the first quarter, according to reports. Regulatory crackdown and a growing trade dispute with the U.S. are expected to be seen as key risks.

Overnight, U.S stocks gained as trade tensions and Syria concerns faded. The S&P 500 climbed 0.8%, while the Dow gained 0.9% and the Nasdaq up 0.7%.

Reports that U.S. President Donald Trump accused China and Russia of devaluing their currencies raised some eye brows as his comment contradicted his own Treasury chief’s earlier view, who said China is not a currency manipulator.

“Russia and China are playing the Currency Devaluation game as the U.S. keeps raising interest rates. Not acceptable!” Trump said on Twitter, without providing any evidence to support his claim.

His comments came amid intensifying trade dispute between the U.S. and China.

In Japan, the Nikkei slipped 0.2% by 9:39PM ET (01:39 GMT). The country’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is scheduled to meet Trump at Mar-a-Lago on Tuesday to discuss the U.S.’s unexpected decision to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The two were also expected to open talks on the tariffs on Japanese steel and aluminum exports.

Meanwhile, Chinese telecommunications-gear maker ZTE Corp (HK:0763) made headlines after the U.S. blocked the company from exporting “sensitive technology” from America. The company was accused of making false statements to U.S. officials, reports suggested. The Shanghai Composite and the Shenzhen Component were both 0.01% lower.

Elsewhere, South Korea’s KOSPI traded 0.2% lower, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 inched 0.2% higher in morning trade.

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