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Japan's Nikkei share average settled 0.6% down at 19, 234. 62 points as market's sentiment was dimmed by a stronger yen. Investors also took caution of the weakened financials which were weighed down by the decline in U.S. bond yields after relatively dovish comments from a top U.S. Fed Reserve official.

The benchmark index ended negative for the week, declining by 0.7%. The Topix shed 0.4% to 1,544.54 while the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 lost 0.5% to 13,855.47.

New York Fed Chief William Dudley's recent comments was perceived as more dovish compared to Fed Chair Janet Yellen's remarks before the Congress, who struck a hawkish tone.

Financial stocks lost ground after a recent rally due to the surge in U.S. yields earlier this week. The sector underperformed after the yields on the 10-year notes sank to 2.44% down from the 2.50% seen on Wednesday.

Toshiba Corp. posted a steep drop of 9.2% after rating agency S&P issued a warning that it could slash the group's rating if financial backing from lenders includes any form of loan restructuring. There were also concerns that the stock may be downgraded to the second section of Tokyo Stock Exchange if continues to underperform until the end of the business year.

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2018.04.23 03:26:00 UTC+00

Tencent Music Prepares for Massive IPO

China's biggest music-streaming firm, Tencent Music Entertainment Group, is gearing up for what would be the largest technology initial public offerings after the successful market debut of its European counterpart, Spotify Technology SA.

The digital-music unit of China's internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd. is planning to scout potential underwriting banks over the course of next month, people privy to the matter said.

The IPO, which could be launched in the second half of the year, would one of the biggest deals of the year and is anticipated to raise billions in proceeds, according to sources. Tencent Music is anticipated to list in the U.S. stock markets, but it is unlikely to finalize its decision on a venue for several months, some of the people familiar to the proceedings said.

The offering could value the business at over $25 billion, sources stated. This was the firm's declared value in recent private transactions, according to a Wall Street Journal report last month. The figures are a sharp jump from its $12.5 billion valuation last last year when Spotify acquired a 9 percent stake in the firm under a share swap.

If investors designate the said figures in its IPO pricing, it would be the fourth-biggest U.S.-listed tech IPO on record, gauged by valuation at the time of the IPO, Dealogic said.

But there is still no guarantee that the firm will push on with a share offering in New York or in other location, and pre-IPO valuations could change until a firm sets a price on its shares.

Investors are anticipating Tencent Music's OPO due to its connection to Tencent Holdings, which has a stake of over 50 percent in Tencent Music, as well as its dominant position in the marketplace.

Treasury traders are now focusing on the pivotal 3 percent mark on the benchmark 10-year U.S. government bond notes.

After the benchmark yield rallied to a new 2018 peak just above 2.96 percent on Friday- its highest level since January 2014, market watchers are shifting their focus to 3 percent 10-year Treasury yield as a focal level for the bond market.

The spread between two- and ten- year yields has risen for the three consecutive sessions, recovering from 41 basis points on Wednesday, the narrowest gap in over a decade. The spread closed on Friday just 50 basis points short.

A rally in commodities to multi-year highs last week added pressure to government bonds by bolstering traders' inflation. While precious metals prices has trimmed some of their gains, bond traders continue to be cautious. The breakeven rate indicated by 10-year inflation-linked U.S. government bonds hit the highest since 2014 last week.

Yields are climbing as the Treasury increases debt sales to fund growing government deficits and as the Federal Reserve reduced its bond portfolio. The central bank is also hinting further interest rate hikes.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un announced that the country will stop nuclear and missile tests immediately, according to the official Korean Central News Agency.

The state media said that Pyongyang would shutter its nuclear test site as part of the country's efforts to push for economic growth and regional peace. The agency cited Kim stating during a meeting of the ruling party's full Central Committee that the country no longer need any nuclear test or test launches of both intermediate and intercontinental range ballistic missiles. He added that because of this, the northern nuclear test site has completed its mission.

The announcement also stated that North Korea has pledged to join international efforts to stop all nuclear tests and promised never to utilize nuclear weapons given that there are no threats to the country.

The announcement came amid increasingly subsiding tensions on the Korean Peninsula before a historic meeting between North and South Korea next week. Kim is set to meet South Korean President Moon Jae-in at a border village on April 27 and U.S. President Donald Trump in the following months in separate summits.

The inter-Korean summit scheduled next week will be the first of such meeting since 2007 and only the third since the 1950-1953 Korean War.

Kim's proposed meeting with Trump will come months following a diplomatic dispute that saw the two leaders throwing tense military threats and personal insults at each other.

The move was welcomed by Trump on Saturday in a tweet, adding that he is looking forward to their summit.

Tags: Policy