Asia-Pacific stocks set for lower start; China’s April trade data ahead

SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific looked set for a lower start on Monday as investors look ahead to the release of Chinese trade data for April.

Futures pointed to a lower open for Japanese stocks. The Nikkei futures contract in Chicago was at 26,735 while its counterpart in Osaka was at 26,800. That compared against the Nikkei 225’s last close at 27,003.56.

Australian stocks also looked poised to slip, with the SPI futures contract at 7,107, against the S&P/ASX 200’s last close at 7,205.60.

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The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 103.767 following a recent jump from levels below 103.2.

The Japanese yen traded at 130.72 per dollar, weaker as compared with levels below 129 seen against the greenback last week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.705 after last week’s drop from above $0.721.

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