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Asian Markets Mixed; Hong Kong Mass Protest in Focus

Investing.com - Asian markets were mixed in morning trade on Monday as Hong Kong stocks traded in the green after another mass protest over the weekend that forced an apology from the city’s chief executive.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 0.8% by 10:30 PM ET (02:30 GMT). As many as two million were present during the protest on Sunday, according to reports. It was the biggest protest since Hong Kong was handed back to China in 1997.

The protest came after Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam backed down on a bill that would have allowed extradition to China. Protesters noted that it was “just a postponement” that left open the possibility of bringing the measure back.

China’s Shanghai Composite rose 0.2%, while the Shenzhen Component was down 0.3%.

On the Sino-U.S. trade front, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said he does not expect a major trade deal between President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping at the upcoming G-20 meeting.

“I think the most that will come out of the G-20 might be an agreement to actively resume talks,” Ross said in an interview Sunday with the Wall Street Journal.

Ross added that the meeting might lay out “new ground rules for discussion and some sort of schedule for when detailed technical talks might resume.”

Japan’s Nikkei 225 climbed 0.5%, while South Korea’s KOSPI slipped 0.2%.

Down under, Australia’s ASX 200 was down 0.2%.

Looking ahead, investors will be focusing on the U.S. Federal Reserve’s policy on Wednesday. The Bank of Japan will also meet this week and is widely expected to retain its massive stimulus program.

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