President Barack Obama said on Tuesday that auto, beef and other trade issues with South Korea must be resolved before he will ask Congress to vote on a two-year-old free trade agreement with the longtime ally.
Asian markets extended losses Tuesday, in the wake of Wall Street's biggest tumble in a month, while government bonds and the yen rose, as investors cut down on riskier assets, demanding evidence of a sustained recovery.
Asian markets edged lower Monday and pulled back from eight-month highs hit earlier this month, as investors fretted over whether the global economy had improved enough to justify a further rally.
South Korea's economy is still sliding, even though the pace has slowed, and it was not time yet for the government to change the current accommodative economic and financial policy, Finance Minister Yoon Jeung-hyun said.
Asian shares marched towards new highs for the year Friday as stronger-than-expected Chinese industrial output data and a rise in U.S. retail sales fuelled hopes that the worst was over for the global economy. Tokyo closed above 10,000 for the first time in eight months.
Commodity-related stocks in Asia and the Australian dollar rose for a third straight day Thursday as oil prices extended gains, keeping a rising trend in raw materials prices intact.
South Korea's central bank on Thursday held interest rates steady at a record low for the fourth consecutive month, judging Asia's fourth-largest economy had stopped falling but is still far from a full recovery.
Commodity-related shares led Asian stocks higher Wednesday, snapping a two-day decline, after metals and oil prices rallied on a decline in the U.S. dollar and as hopes grew for stronger Chinese industrial demand.
Asian shares fell Tuesday for a second consecutive session as investors worried that a recent rally may be overdone, though oil prices extended gains ahead of data this week expected to show a fall in U.S. crude inventories.
Asian markets were mostly higher Monday after smaller than expected U.S. job losses suggested a recovery is under way, while government bonds slid as investors speculated central banks may have to raise interest rates sooner than previously thought.
South Korea's central bank on Friday downplayed hopes for an early recovery in Asia's fourth-largest economy, saying a rebound in the first quarter owed almost wholly to fiscal stimulus spending.
Asian stocks rose Friday as hopes for a global economic recovery drove up appetite for riskier assets, but traders were cautious ahead of U.S. monthly job data. Resource shares were among the leading gainers after oil prices surged to a seven-month high on hopes that the global recession had bottomed out.
Asian markets slipped Thursday, after disappointing U.S. private employment and services sector data led investors to trim over extended bets and look for better points to buy again.
Asian stocks hovered close to eight-month highs Wednesday, pausing for breath after rallying on optimism that the global economy is through the worst, while the dollar struggled near its latest set of lows for the year.
Improving global manufacturing data lifted some Asian markets Tuesday, bringing a regional index near to levels before the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September, but the pace of gains slowed as investors weighed how much longer a heady, three-month rally will last.
South Korea's foreign exchange reserves reported their biggest monthly rise ever in May, central bank data showed on Tuesday.
Asian markets shot to eight-month highs Monday after a gauge of China's manufacturing activity offered fresh evidence of a recovery in the world's third-largest economy.
South Korean exports and imports in May both dropped more than expected, data showed on Monday, dampening growing hopes for an early recovery in Asia's fourth-largest economy.
Asian markets were mostly higher Friday, but lagging Wall Street's rise after some solid gains earlier in the week. Higher commodity prices also supported mining and energy-related stocks in Asia, though investors were reluctant to take big bets on increasingly expensive shares until more evidence emerged of a sustained recovery.
South Korean manufacturers' assessment of the business outlook for June hit an eight-month high, data showed on Friday, indicating the economy had passed its trough.