Asian shares tumble amid Reuters uncertainty over Georgia Senate outflow

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Pedestrians walk past an electronic board outside a realtor in Tokyo

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By Stanley White

TOKYO (Reuters) – Asian stocks fell on Tuesday amid uncertainty over Georgia’s Senate outflows, which could have a huge impact on future US President Joe Biden’s economic policies.

MSCI’s broadest index for stocks in the Asia-Pacific region outside Japan fell 0.12%, pulling back from a record high in the previous session. Australian stocks fell 0.16%.

Japanese stocks lost 0.47% after a media report said the government will cut business hours in Tokyo and surrounding cities from Thursday.

US stock futures gained 0.09%.

Oil futures prolonged the decline in Asian trading after large producers delayed a decision to increase production.

In the United States, Senate control is at stake in Georgia’s double election on Tuesday.

A Democratic win in both races could divert control of the Senate from the Republicans, but both competitions are very close and the results may not be known immediately, which could lead to a repeat of the chaotic vote counts following the last US presidential year.

“2021 begins with a bang with crucial political and economic news that the markets can digest. The undisputed climax will be the result of the runoff elections for the Senate seat in Georgia,” wrote James Knightley, ING’s international chief economist, in a research protocol.

“If the Democrats win both seats, it should result in the biggest fiscal stimulus for 2021. Still, it could be the excuse for short-term consolidation in risk markets after a strong post-election rally.”

Uncertainty about the Georgia vote and worries about rising coronavirus infections caused Wall Street to plummet on Monday.

The S&P 500 lost 1.27%, the S&P 500 lost 1.49%, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq fell 1.48%.

Outgoing Republican President Donald Trump’s call to pressure Georgia’s top election officials to “find” votes to reverse his loss to President-elect Biden in the state also unsettled some investors.

The MSCI’s broadest indicator for global equities declined 0.09% in Asia on Tuesday, also pulling back from a record set in the previous session.

Heightened risk aversion supported the dollar against most currencies, but movements early in the year were subdued.

The futures fell 0.46% to $ 47.40 a barrel. The big oil producers will meet later Tuesday to decide on production volumes for February after talks collapsed the previous day.

Gold was a little lower. fell 0.12% to $ 1,939.26 an ounce. [GOL/]

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