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Asia ETF Roundup (Market) – December 2019 and January 2020

Novel coronavirus outbreak; U.S. rates on hold, Brazil and Malaysia Cut Rates

Jackie Choy, CFA 06 February, 2020 | 0:06
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For the latest ETF industry news, please refer to our “Asia ETF Roundup (Industry) – December 2019 and January 2020”.

Major Markets Performance

The New Year came with a fresh bout of fear-inducing headlines. Most notably, the novel coronavirus outbreak in China gained markets’ attention in late January. Many major market indices posted losses for the month, including the Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index (-6.7%) and HSCEI (-8.3%), Taiwan’s TAIEX (-4.2%) and Korea’s KOSPI (-3.6%). Emerging-markets stocks also experienced declines of varying magnitude. However, the impact of the outbreak was only partially reflected in China’s A-Share markets’ January performance (CSI 300 -2.3%, Shanghai Composite -2.4%) as the China central government extended the Chinese New Year holiday in hopes of helping control the spread of the virus. China’s stock markets were closed from 24 January and resumed on 3 February. The S&P 500 was little changed for the month of January, falling 0.2%. Despite escalating tensions between the US and Iran since the beginning of the year, the S&P 500 scored new highs in the middle of the month. The index tumbled from its fresh highs near the end of the month as coronavirus fears flared. Other noteworthy January events include the U.S. removing its “currency manipulator” designation for China, the signing of a first stage US-China trade deal and the U.K.’s official exit from the European Union. 

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About Author

Jackie Choy, CFA  is the Director of ETF Research for Morningstar Investment Management Asia

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