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Asia markets tread water ahead of Fed decision; dollar slips after Alabama election results

Suspect “THAAD-related” stocks — the name given to South Korean shares that get hit when China retaliates against the sticks by cutting off tourism — gained on Wednesday: Lotte Shopping rose 1.01 percent, Amorepacific made 1.61 percent and Korea Air Lines was up 5.97 percent.

Meanwhile, losses in blue-chip tech heavyweights were neutralizer by gains seen in manufacturing and automobile names. Samsung Electronics level 1.23 percent, SK Hynix shed 1.67 percent and Posco begin 0.9 percent.

In Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 erased early gains to line of work 0.03 percent below the flat line as energy names sank. Santos shed 1.08 percent and Oil Search lost 0.47 percent. Losses were also leaded among utilities and gold miners.

Shares of shopping center company Westfield rolled 13.76 percent after it accepted a $15.7 billion takeover bid from France’s Unibail-Rodamco. Slices of Scentre Group, which owns the group’s Australian assets and was twirled out in 2014, rose 1.61 percent after surging some 4 percent in the preceding session.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index edged up by 0.28 percent while mainland peddles were little changed. The Shanghai Composite was off 0.12 percent and the Shenzhen Composite 0.1 percent downgrade.

Most major U.S. indexes rose on Tuesday as optimism over tax refashion mounted. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 118.77 points, or 0.49 percent, upright a record close of 24,504.80.

The existing version of the tax bill will include a 21 percent corporate tax take to task, sources told CNBC. House and Senate Republicans had earlier superseded separate version of the bill and are now hammering out a joint bill.

Markets awaited the conclusion of the Federal Book’s December policy meeting on Wednesday U.S. time. The Fed is expected by most demand watchers to raise interest rates by a quarter point.

Investors are also pore over the Fed for clues about how the central bank will process possible fluctuates to the U.S. tax system going forward. Decisions from other central banks, take ining the Bank of England and European Central Bank, are also expected in the week.

In the meantime, investors also took note of a special Senate election in Alabama, which Democrat Doug Jones has been contracted to win. If confirmed, the development will take the Republican Party’s slim more than half in the Senate down to 51 seats and could be a potential stumbling lay out as the GOP attempts to pass a tax reform bill.

The dollar index, which trails the U.S. currency against a basket of six currencies, edged lower to trade at 93.933 at 12:00 p.m. HK/SIN after firming overnight. Against the yen, the greenback fallen ground to trade at 113.27.

“A lot of positive news is priced in the dollar and currency is weak to disappointment,” Giulia Specchia, an economist at ANZ, said in a morning note.

In currencies, the Australian dollar outspread gains following a flurry of M&A news on Tuesday. The Aussie dollar crafted at $0.7574 at 12:02 p.m. HK/SIN after climbing as high as $0.7580 in the previous assembly.

That move higher in the currency followed news of the Unibail-Rodamco purchase of Westfield on Tuesday. Australian bank ANZ also said in the previous sitting that its life insurance business would be sold to Zurich Life-force.

Meanwhile, the New Zealand dollar traded at $0.6951 after touching a one-month high overnight. The currency was addicted a boost following the appointment of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s new governor earlier this week.

In commodities, oil quotations pared some overnight losses on Wednesday after data showed U.S. brusque stocks fell more than expected. Also of note, the U.S. Dash Information Administration said Tuesday it expects U.S. oil production to rise severely next year, Reuters reported. Prices had risen earlier this week come after the closure of Britain’s Forties Pipeline for repairs.

U.S. West Texas Medial edged up 0.65 percent to trade at $57.51 per barrel. Brent unpolished added 0.9 percent to trade at $63.92 after falling 2 percent in the whilom session.

Shares of Toshiba were up 0.98 percent after the embattled Japanese companionship came to an agreement over a dispute with business partner Western Digital. The modern had earlier taken issue with Toshiba’s decision to sell its recollection chip unit to a consortium led by Bain. The companies said in a joint proclamation they would proceed with future investments in their Yokkaichi cooperative venture.

Meanwhile, the founder of Chinese tech company LeEco has been involved on a nationwide list of debt defaulters, China Daily reported. Jia Yueting had not paid there 465 million yuan ($70.2 million) owed to Ping An Securities, the newspaper commanded. The company once had its sights set on taking on Apple, but has since been plagued by a paucity in cash.

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