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China’s service sector shrinks, as markets await US payroll report – business live

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Rolling coverage of the latest economic and financial news

8.40am BST

Japan’s Topix stock market index has hit a 30-year high today, after prime minister Yoshihide Suga unexpectedly announced he will step down.

Suga is stepping aside from his party’s leadership after less than a year, amid mounting discontent at his government’s handling of the pandemic.

Japanese shares rose sharply on the news, with the broad Topix stock index hitting its highest level in three decades after rising 1.7%.

“The battle against the coronavirus takes a vast amount of energy and I don’t feel it is possible to carry on with that and fight the upcoming election for the party leadership,” said Suga in a brief statement to reporters, during which he took no questions.

Suga took office less than a year ago, stepping up after serving as chief cabinet secretary and government spokesperson. The ruling Liberal Democratic party (LDP) is due to hold its leadership election on 29 September and Suga had been widely expected to seek reelection.

Related: Japan PM Yoshihide Suga announces he won’t run for re-election as party leader

8.16am BST

China isn’t alone. Activity across Australia and Japan’s service sectors also fell last month, after lockdown restrictions were brought in to fight the pandemic.

Wow! Caixin #China Services #PMI cratered to 46.7 in August as #Covid caused fresh mobility restrictions. Australia’s Services PMI 42.9, Japan 42.9.

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The Groucho

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