Softbank, Japan politics, currencies and oil

Stocks in Asia were set to trade lower at the open as investors watch political developments in Japan as the search for its leader continues.

Futures pointed to a lower open for Japanese stocks. The Nikkei futures contract in Chicago was at 23,385 while its counterpart in Osaka was at 23,130. That compared against the Nikkei 225’s last close at 23,406.49.

Shares in Australia were also set to dip, with the SPI futures contract at 5,852.0, as compared to the S&P/ASX 200’s last close at 5,859.40.

Softbank shares watched

Japan political developments

Meanwhile, developments in Japanese politics will be watched as the search for the successor for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe continues.

Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga is seen as the front-runner to succeed Abe, according to Kyodo News, which reported that the ruling Liberal Democratic Party is set to hold an election to choose its new leader on Monday.

The Japanese yen traded at 106.13 against the greenback, following a weakening last week from levels below 106 per dollar.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was last at 93.262 after bouncing from levels around 92.7 last week.

The Australian dollar was at $0.7277 after rising from levels below $0.725 last week.

Here’s a look at what’s on tap:

  • China: House prices data for August at 9:30 a.m. HK/SIN

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