Asia’s markets rise as China says it will end quarantine for inbound travelers

China holds Covid press briefing at 3pm local time

China’s health authorities are scheduled to hold a press conference at 3pm local time, according to state media.

The briefing will cover recently introduced measures that changed the designation of Covid-19 as a “Category B” virus from its previous classification of “Category A.”

The measures, published late Monday, also said China would scrap quarantine for inbound travelers from 8 January 2023.

Representatives from the National Health Commission and the National Bureau of Disease Control and Prevention are available to answer questions, the release said.

– Jihye Lee, Evelyn Cheng

US winter storm to move global oil markets, analyst says

That heavy winter snowstormthat swept across the United States over the past few days will have knock-on effects on the global energy market, said Andy Lipow, president of Lipow Oil Associates.

Crude oil production in North Dakota was cut by 300,000 barrels per day as a result of the blizzard, Lipow said, adding that there was a 10% to 15% drop in the nation’s natural gas production due to the cold weather phenomenon.

“It’s going to affect the world’s oil markets [the U.S. is] exports significant amounts of gasoline diesel, particularly to Europe and South America,” Lipow said.

He added that LNG exports to other countries have been hampered by temporary closures of some ports along the Texas Gulf Coast due to high winds.

However, Lipow said the weather is “always a temporary phenomenon” and gasoline supplies remain in “good condition.”

Brent Crude futures rose 0.6% to $84.42 a barrel. barrel, while West Texas Intermediate Futures rose correspondingly by 0.6% to 80.04 dollars per barrel.

– Lee Ying Shan

Japan’s unemployment rate falls to 2.5% in November

Japan’s unemployment rate in November was 2.5%, in line with the expectations of analysts polled by Reuters.

The reading marks a modest drop from October’s reading of 2.6%.

Japan’s job-to-applicant ratio for the month was 1.35, slightly missing estimates of 1.36 and unchanged from the previous month, when it saw the highest job vacancy rate since March 2020.

– Jihye Lee

Underweight China in 2023 is wrong decision, says Santa Lucia Asset Management

We are more bullish on China than we have ever been, says the asset management firm

Investors planning to be underweight China in 2023 are making the wrong decision, said James Morton, chief investment officer at Santa Lucia Asset Management.

“We’re more bullish today than I think we’ve ever been because we’re more confident that’s the right call for 2023.” Morton said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” Tuesday.

While there will be “a little bit of pain” in the next few months as Covid cases are expected to rise from China’s reopening, corporate profits are expected to be “significantly better” year-on-year in the second quarter of 2023, he said.

— Charmaine Jacob

Japan’s retail sales grow for ninth consecutive month

Japan’s retail sales grew 2.6% in November, marking the ninth month of growth, according to the data published by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

The reading missed expectations for growth of 3.7%, according to economists polled by Reuters – and marks the slowest growth since July.

The government’s lifting of Covid border restrictions and a domestic travel subsidy boosted broader consumer demand as the economy saw an unexpected slowdown in the recovery in private consumption.

– Jihye Lee

CNBC Pro: Tesla stock is down 35% this month — and short sellers surged

Short sellers raised their bets against Tesla this month, as the electric car maker’s shares fell another 35%.

More than 3% of Tesla shares currently trading are sold short, according to S3 Partners. Only Apple faces a bigger short bet.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.

– Ganesh Rao

China’s year-to-date industrial output figures fall further

China’s overall profit for industrial enterprises for January to November fell further to -3.6% from a year ago, according to data from National Bureau of Statistics.

November’s print marks the fifth straight negative reading after falling below 0 in July, and marks the worst performance since August 2020, when it saw a 4.4% loss.

– Jihye Lee

CNBC Pro: Will 2023 be a better year for the chip sector? Wall Street professionals weigh in and give their top picks

Once an investor favorite, chip stocks have sold off this year amid a flight to safety. The pros reveal what’s next for the sector and name their top stock picks.

Pro subscribers can read more here.

— Zavier Ong

Stocks close higher to end the week

Shares ended in the green on Friday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 176 points higher, or 0.5%, at 33,203.93. The S&P 500 rose 0.6% to 3,844.82, while the Nasdaq Composite added 0.2% to close at 10,497.86.

– Tanaya Machel

The Fed’s preferred inflation gauge is rising slightly more than expected

The core price index for personal consumption expenditures, the Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation gauge, rose slightly more than economists expected on a year-over-year basis.

Core PCE rose 4.7% in November from the same period last year, while economists polled by Dow Jones expected a 4.6% gain. Month-on-month, the index rose 0.2%, which is in line with expectations.

— Fred Imbert

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