SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific were mostly lower in Tuesday trade as investors watched for market reaction to U.S. President Joe Biden picking Jerome Powell for a second term as Federal Reserve chair.
South Korea’s Kospi dipped 0.46%, with shares of biopharmaceutical firm Celltrion plunging more than 6%.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.42% lower.
Markets in Japan are closed on Tuesday for a holiday.
Tech stocks fall
Technology stocks in Asia fell on Tuesday, tracking losses seen by their peers overnight stateside.
South Korea’s LG Electronics shed 4.1% and Kakao dropped 2.33%.
Overnight stateside, the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.26% to 15,854.76. The Dow Jones Industrial Average edged 17.27 points higher to 35,619.25 while the S&P 500 slipped 0.32% to 4,682.94.
Those moves came as investors on Wall Street reacted to Biden picking Powell for another term as Fed chair. Biden had been under pressure to name a more progressive Democrat, rather than keep Republican Powell in the role.
Powell has guided the U.S. central bank and the country’s economy through the pandemic recession, unleashing unprecedented monetary stimulus to keep financial markets afloat. His renomination now heads to the Senate for confirmation.
Currencies and oil
The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 96.45, higher than the levels below 95.4 seen last week.
The Japanese yen traded at 114.77 per dollar, following a recent sharp weakening from below 114.5 against the greenback. The Australian dollar was at $0.7235, still off levels above $0.735 seen last week.
— CNBC’s Jeff Cox and Thomas Franck contributed to this report.