Asian shares oscillated between gains and losses on Monday in morning session as investors weighed a smaller-than-forecast increase in US payrolls and the bailout of a Portuguese bank.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index lost less than 0.1% 148 as of 10:58 a.m. in Tokyo after gaining less than 0.1%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index added 0.1% and the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland shares traded in the city advanced 0.4%. The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.1%. Taiwan’s Taiex Index was little changed and Singapore’s Straits Times Index declined 0.6%.
Japan’s Topix index and South Korea’s Kospi index both fell 0.1%. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index slipped 0.5%, while New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index lost 0.3%.
Portugal’s central bank took control of Banco Espirito Santo SA in a €4.9 billion bailout that will leave junior bondholders with losses. Banco Espirito Santo has been forced to take government money after regulators uncovered potential losses on loans to other companies tied to Portugal’s Espirito Santo family and ordered the lender to raise capital.
In the US, data last week showed employers added more than 200,000 jobs for a sixth straight month in July, the longest such period of gains since 1997. The 209,000 advance fell short of the 230,000 increase forecast by economists. The jobless rate climbed to 6.2% from 6.1% in June as more people entered the labour force.
Honda Motor Co., which gets 47% of its revenue in North America, fell 1.3% in Tokyo. China Everbright Ltd. soared 7.1% in Hong Kong on government plans to revamp the ownership of China Everbright Group Ltd.
Horizon Oil Ltd. slumped 8.1% on speculation Roc Oil Co. may end plans to combine with the Australian oil explorer.