Asia markets fall as China keeps benchmark loan rates unchanged; Fed decision on horizon

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This is CNBC's live blog covering Asia-Pacific markets.

Asia-Pacific markets fell across the board as China left its one-year and five-year loan prime rates unchanged and traders brace for the U.S. Federal Reserve's rate decision Wednesday stateside.

China's one-year and five-year loan prime rates were held at 3.45% and 4.2% respectively.

The region also saw August trade data out from Japan, while wholesale inflation in South Korea jumped for the first time since July 2022.

Japan's Nikkei 225 was down 0.66% to close at 33,023.78, while the Topix lost 1% and marked a three-day losing streak.

Japan's trade deficit in August narrowed by two-thirds on a year-on-year basis, while imports and exports recorded a smaller fall than expected.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.46% to end at 7,163.3, also notching a third straight day of losses.

In contrast, South Korea's Kospi closed 0.02% higher at 2,559.77, bucking the wider sell-off, but the Kosdaq was down 0.13% to 882.72.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng index slumped 0.62% after the LPR announcement, and mainland Chinese markets were also in negative territory, with the CSI 300 falling 0.4% and closing at 3,705.69.

On Tuesday in the U.S., all three major indexes lost ground ahead of the Fed's decision, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average shedding 0.31%.

The broad-market S&P 500 slid 0.22%, while the Nasdaq Composite lost 0.23%.

— CNBC's Samantha Subin and Alex Harring contributed to this report

China leaves benchmark loan rates unchanged

China left its one-year and five-year loan prime rates unchanged at 3.45% and 4.2% respectively for September.

The People's Bank of China last cut the one-year LPR rates in August, lowering it to 3.45% from 3.55%, while the five-year LPR was last cut in June from 4.3% to 4.2%.

Hebe Chen, market analyst at IG International said "PBOC's hold today highlights the dilemma that central bank keeps struggling with: to save the economy or save the yuan."

As such, she thinks that the central bank's "inconsistence" will persist, "due to the lack of a committed priority."

The offshore yuan strengthened slightly to trade at 7.3028 against the greenback. The currency hit its all-time low just recently, at 7.3650 against the U.S. dollar on Sept. 8.

— Lim Hui Jie

Nio shares plunge over 12% after company announces $1 billion bond issue

Shares of Chinese electric vehicle maker Nio tumbled 12.63% after the company announced a $1 billion convertible bond issuance, split into two bonds late on Tuesday.

A $500 million bond will mature in 2029 and carries a coupon of 3.875% per year, while the remaining $500 million bond will mature in 2030 and carries a coupon of 4.625%

Nio said the proceeds from the bonds will be used to repurchase $500 million of bonds expiring in 2026 and 2027, as well as "to further strengthen its balance sheet position as well as for general corporate purposes."

— Lim Hui Jie

Japan trade deficit falls by two thirds year-on-year in August

Japan's trade deficit fell 66.7% in August, coming in at 930.5 billion yen ($6.3 billion) compared with the 2.79 trillion yen deficit a year ago.

However, the trade deficit was still wider than the 659.1 billion yen expected by economists polled by Reuters.

Both imports and exports to the world's third-largest economy fell 17.8% and 0.8% year-on-year respectively, lower than Reuters expectations of a 19.4% fall for imports and 1.7% drop for exports.

— Lim Hui Jie

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It's one of "two big long-term winners" in artificial intelligence and is underappreciated in that area, he told CNBC.

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— Weizhen Tan

South Korea wholesale inflation rate rises for first time in over a year

South Korea's producer price index rose 1% year on year in August, marking the first time the wholesale inflation rate has risen since July 2022.

This is higher than the 0.3% year-on-year gain recorded in July. On a month on month basis, the PPI gained 0.9% in August, compared with a 0.2% rise the month before.

Agricultural, forestry and marine products saw the largest rise in prices in August, with prices climbing 3.6% year-on-year and 7.3% month-on-month

The PPI measures the average change in price of goods and services sold by manufacturers and producers in the wholesale market.

— Lim Hui Jie

CNBC Pro: House prices are falling and rents are rising in the UK. These 2 stocks will benefit, analysts say

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As mortgage rates go up and pile pressure on housebuilders to improve sales, these two unique stocks are poised to take advantage of the environment.

The analysts expect one of the stocks to rise by more than 60% over the next 12 months, thanks to the trend.

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— Ganesh Rao

Central banks take center stage around the world

It's a big week for central banks — both within the U.S. and abroad.

The Federal Reserve begins its two-day policy meeting Tuesday. Traders are pricing in a 99% probability the Fed skips a rate hike when announcing policy on Wednesday, according to CMEGroup's FedWatch tool, which gauges pricing in fed funds futures. The Fed will also offer economic forecasts on Wednesday.

The central banks of multiple other countries are also expected to announce policy decisions this week. Here's a list of the countries scheduled to release decisions in the 36 hours following the Fed's announcement expected at 2 p.m. ET on Wednesday, per Bespoke Investment Group:

  • Brazil
  • Indonesia
  • Japan
  • Norway
  • South Africa
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Turkey
  • The United Kingdom

Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at CFRA Research, said investors around the globe "are on edge waiting to find out what their central banks are likely to do."

— Alex Harring

Oil prices jump Tuesday on growing supply concerns

Oil prices surged more than $1, marking a fourth consecutive session of gains as weak U.S. shale output added to supply concerns from extended production cuts by Saudi Arabia and Russia.

Here's how prices fared Tuesday morning:

Prices have gained for three consecutive weeks, with both benchmarks reaching their highest since last year.

— Pia Singh

All S&P 500 sectors trade down

All 11 sectors in the S&P 500 traded down on Tuesday.

The broad index slipped around 0.7% shortly after 1 p.m. ET. Consumer discretionary, energy and industrial stocks were among the worst performing, with the three sectors all down more than 1%.

Utilities and health care were able to keep losses mitigated, down just 0.3% each.

— Alex Harring

Amazon, software stocks among biggest Nasdaq laggards

The Nasdaq-100 slumped nearly 1% during morning trading, led to the downside by shares of software and semiconductor stocks.

Some of the biggest laggards included Amazon, Datadog and Zoom Video, falling nearly 3% each. Marvell Technology, Qualcomm, CrowdStrike and Applied Materials slumped more than 2%.

Uruguay-headquartered e-commerce company MercadoLibre was the biggest laggard on the index, last down 3.6%.

— Samantha Subin

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