RTTNews - The markets across the Asia-Pacific region ended in positive territory on increasing optimism that the global economy will start recovering from the later part of this year. Better-than-expected quarterly results from companies despite lackluster revenues ignited the hopes of recovery.
In the U.S., low volume, which is characteristic of summer trading, was visible for much of Wednesday's session, as traders digested earnings results from companies, including Apple (AAPL), Yahoo! (YHOO), Pfizer (PFE) Boeing (BA), Morgan Stanley (MS), Wells Fargo (WFC), and PepsiCo (PEP).
While the Nasdaq eked out a gain of 10.18 points or 0.5%, finishing at 1,926, the Dow fell by 34.68 points or 0.4% to 8,881 and the S&P 500 slipped by 0.51 points or 0.1% to close at 954.
The Nikkei 225 Average opened slightly lower at 9,712 compared to its previous close of 9,723 on weak cues from Wall Street. After lingering around the unchanged line amid choppy trading in early session, the index decisively moved above the unchanged line led by exporters and tech stocks following weaker local currency on expectations of recovery in global economy. The market ended the session at 9,793, up 69.78 points, or 0.72%. The broader Topix Index of all first section issues rose 2.11 points, or 0.23% to 909.
Light sweet crude oil for September delivery ended the Asian trading session at $65.54, up $0.14 from its previous close in New York at $65.40 on Wednesday.
On the economic front, data released by the Ministry of Finance revealed that trade surplus for the month of June came in at JPY 508 billion, much higher than the surplus of JPY104.1 billion reported in the same period last year. However, it was lower than economists' expectation of a surplus of JPY610 billion. Total exports dropped 35.7% year-on-year in June to JPY 4.59 trillion after falling 40.9% in the preceding month. Imports were down 41.9% to JPY 4.09 trillion, slower than the 42.4% drop in the preceding month.
Electronic-related shares led the gains following the weakening of the local currency against the U.S greenback and a mild recovery in exports.
Sumco gained 6.8% following a 4.6% rise on the previous session on expectations of higher prices for wafers. JPMorgan lifted Sumco to neutral from underperform, saying wafer prices may rise following large declines in the first half of the year. Shin-Etsu added 1.5%
Toyo Tanso Co., surged up 13% after Credit Suisse Group AG boosted the stock to outperform from underperform on expectations of a stronger demand for LED products.
Nitto Denko Corp., advanced 1.3% after reporting a slower decline in sales during June. Sales declined 13% during June following a 21% drop in May.
Mixed trading was witnessed among the banking stocks. While Mitsubishi UFJ Financial edged down 0.18%, Mizuho Financial gained 1.48% and Resona Holdings advanced 1.49% and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group rose 0.79%.
In Australia, The All Ordinaries Index opened unchanged from its previous close at 4,069 and drifted into negative territory as traders preferred to lock in gains following seven days of rally. A Mixed closing in the U.S and cautious optimism about a global recovery also impacted trading as traders preferred to move to the sidelines. The Index traded in a narrow range throughout the session and managed to close in the green with a marginal gain of 3.70 points, or 0.09% at 4,073. However, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index slipped into red and closed at 4,064, representing a loss of 4.4 points, or 0.11%.
Shares of Macquarie Group as well as Macquarie Airports were placed on a trading halt ahead of the announcement from Macquarie Airports regarding the issue of strategic options to enhance security holder value.
Mining stocks gained on expectation of higher demand. BHP Billiton gained 0.54%, Rio Tinto gained 3.01%, Fortescue Metals advanced 2.56% and Oz Minerals surged up 6.54%.
Energy stocks ended mixed. Woodside Petroleum edged down 0.34% and Santos lost 1.15%. However, Oil Search bucked the trend and advanced 3.09%. .
Gold stocks ended mixed on profit taking. While Lihir Gold shed 0.35 %, Newcrest Mining advanced 0.82% and Sino Gold rose 5.10%.
Banking stocks dragged down the indices after National Australia Bank said it raised capital to the extent of $2 billion at a lower price of A$21.5 per share. The stock slumped 5.22%. Among other banks, ANZ Bank slipped 0.77%, Commonwealth Bank edged down 0.43% and Westpac Banking fell 1.03%.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index ended in positive territory on increasing optimism about global recovery later in the year. The market opened sharply higher at 19,432 compared to its previous close at 19,248 and continued to move northward. The market ended with a gain of 569.53 points, or 2.96% at 19,818.
China related stocks were the major gainers, followed by property stocks. The market sentiment was very positive resulting in all the 42 components of the index posting gains from previous close.
China Overseas Land soared 6.44%. Among others in property space, SHK Property gained 4.03% Swire Pacific gained 4.57%, Sino Land edged rose 3.01% and Wharf Holdings surged up 6.10%.
Among financials, HSBC Holdings gained 2.71%, Hang Seng Bank rose 1.98%, China Construction Bank advanced 3.57%, and Bank of Communications increased 5.24%.
In South Korea, the benchmark KOSPI Index ended in positive territory on increasing optimism about recovery later in the year. The market opened higher at 1,495 compared to previous close at 1,494. Profit taking at higher levels and selective buying in technology stocks by foreign institutional investors characterized the trading session with the index managing to close at 1,496, representing a gain of 2.45 points, or 0.16%.
Financial shares led the gain. State-run lender Industrial Bank of Korea soared up 8%, Korea Exchange
Bank advanced 2.36%, and Woori Finance Holdings advanced 3.63%.
Hyundai Motor declined 2.97% on profit taking and its affiliate Kia Motors plunged 4.18%.
The Indian market bounced back sharply after a 2-day loss, as impressive quarterly earnings from top bluechip companies and reports about likely upgrades in earnings across sectors for the rest of the year, more than offset concerns about a spike in valuations.
The BSE Sensex finished at 15,231, up 388 points or 2.61% from its previous close, and the S&P CNX Nifty climbed 125 points or 2.84% to 4,524.
Among the other major markets in the region, China's Shanghai Composite Index gained 31.87 points, or 0.97% to close at 3,328, Singapore's Strait Times Index added 34.07 points, or 1.39% to close at 2,485 and Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index rose 35.10 points, or 1.65% to close at 2,161. Taiwan's Weighted Index however slipped and ended with a minor loss of 4.44 points, or 0.06%, to close at 6,981.
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