Asian shares mostly higher after upbeat close on Wall Street
BANGKOK — Shares in Asia were mostly higher Monday as gains carried over from an upbeat finish last week on Wall Street.
Tokyo and Seoul advanced, while Shanghai was closed for holidays. U.S. futures were almost unchanged as oil prices rose.
Analysts said a healthy report Friday on the U.S. jobs market eased worries over the recovery from the pandemic, though it also reinforced the likelihood of more interest rate hikes. Shares in Hong Kong-traded Chinese businesses rose after Beijing regulators revised rules regarding overseas regulators’ access to audits of companies listed on overseas markets.
The Chinese financial magazine Caixin reported that China proposed the revisions of rules restricting sharing of financial data of offshore-traded companies to help resolving a longstanding dispute with the U.S. that could result in more than 200 Chinese stocks being kicked off American exchanges. Caixin stated that it would eliminate the requirement that inspections of overseas-traded Chinese businesses be carried out mainly by Chinese regulators.
“Signs that there may be a compromise to keep Chinese stocks in the U.S. might help to ease some of the delisting concerns, Jun Rong Yeap, IG, said in a comment.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index climbed 1.9% to 22,462. 17 after Chief Executive Carrie Lam said she would not seek a second term as the territory’s top official.
Lam’s five-year tenure has been marked by huge protests, a security crackdown and an overwhelming COVID-19 wave. Her successor will be picked in May and the city’s security chief during the 2019 protests is among the possible choices
In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 gained 0.3% to 27,736.47. The Kospi in Seoul rose 0.6%, to 2,755.99. Sydney’s S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.5% to 7,526. 70 while India’s Sensex jumped 2.2% to 60,558.20.
On Friday, the S&P 500 rose 0.3% to 4,545.86. The benchmark index posted a slight gain for the week despite lingering concerns about high inflation and higher interest rates from Federal Reserve.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.4 to 34,818. 27, while the Nasdaq rose 0.3% to 14,261.50. The Russell 2000 gained 1% to 2,091.11. A strong economy and jobs market give the Federal Reserve more flexibility to raise interest rates quickly to counter rising prices. The Fed has already raised its key overnight rate once, the first such increase since 2018. Traders increased their odds that the Fed would raise rates at its next meeting by twice the usual amount following Friday’s jobs report.
In the bond market, the yield of the two-year Treasury jumped to 2. 45% from 2. 28% late Thursday.
The two-year yield again surpassed the 10-year yield, which was also climbing, but not as quickly. It topped the 10-year yield last week for the first time since 2019. This is a possible indicator of a recession but it’s not a perfect indicator.
Economists believe markets might be affected by extraordinary measures taken to maintain low interest rates by the Federal Reserve and other central bank central banks.
As of early Monday, the 10-year yield was at 2. 42%, up from 2. 38% on Friday.
Oil and gas prices have been rising as demand recovers from the depths of the COVID-19 pandemic. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, a major oil-and-gas producer, has raised concerns that sanctions and export restrictions could impede supplies.
A barrel of U.S. crude oil gained46 cents to $99. 73 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange early Monday. It dipped 1% on Friday to $99.27. Early last month, when disruptions to crude supplies were at their height, it briefly touched $130.
Brent crude, the international standard for pricing, picked up 59 cents to $104. 98 per barrel.
In currency dealings, the dollar bought 122. 72 Japanese yen, up from 122. 61 late Friday. The euro rose to $1. 1052 from $1.1042.
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