RTTNews - The markets across the Asia-Pacific region, except Japan and India, ended in positive territory on Tuesday on increasing hopes that the worst for the global economy is over. However, most of the markets, excluding Hong Kong, trimmed off some of the gains on profit taking. The markets in Indian and Japan ended in negative territory.

In the U.S., stocks ended in positive territory, led by a modest rally in late session, characterized by low volumes after a report that showed an increase in new home sales boosted optimistic expectations of a recovery in the world's largest economy.

A report released by the Commerce Department revealed that new home sales jumped by 11% in June, the sharpest increase in nearly nine years. According to the report, new home sales rose to an annual rate of 384,000 in June from the revised May rate of 346,000. Economists had expected sales to rise to 352,000 from the 342,000 originally reported for the previous month.

Traders also digested positive earnings from RadioShack (RSH), Tellabs (TLAB) Corning (GLW) Verizon (VZ) and Honeywell (HON).

The Dow closed up by 15.27 points or 0.2% at 9,109, the Nasdaq climbed by 1.93 points or 0.1% to 1,968 and the S&P 500 rose by 2.92 points or 0.3% at 982.

The Nikkei 225 Average opened sharply higher at 10,117 compared to its previous close of 10,089, but drifted into negative territory as traders preferred to take profits. The index lingered in negative territory for the rest of the session and ended with a loss of 1.40 points or 0.01% at 10,087. However, the broader Topix Index of all first section issues ended in positive territory with a gain of 1.87 points, or 0.20%, at 930.

Light sweet crude oil for September delivery ended the Asian trading session at $68.47, up $0.09 from its previous close in New York at $68.38 a barrel on Monday.

Steel stocks gained on expectation of more demand from China after Goldman Sachs revised its ratings for JFE Holdings and Sanyo Special Steel. JFE Holdings surged up 7.25% and Sanyo Special Steel rose 13%.

Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. gained 3.91% after Nomura Holdings Inc. recommended buying the bank. Among others, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial edged up 0.36% and Mizuho Financial remained unchanged at previous close. Resona Holdings edged down 0.78% on profit taking.

Brokerages fell on profit taking. Daiwa Securities edged down 0.54% and Nomura Holdings slipped 0.61%.

Hitachi slumped 3.60% as investors were apprehensive of the company's plan in connection with the spending on the affiliates. Monday, the company revealed that it would convert five of its affiliates in to wholly-owned subsidiaries.

Mixed trading was witnessed in shipping stocks. Mitsui O.S.K. Lines edged down 0.83%, Kawasaki Kisen ended unchanged and Nippon Yusen gained 0.75%.

In Australia, the All Ordinaries Index opened slightly higher at 4,150 compared to its previous close at 4,148 and moved higher following Wall Street cues. The index remained above the unchanged line throughout the session despite trimming some gains on profit taking and ending up 26.20 points, or 0.63% at 4,174. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index also followed a similar trend and ended at 4,170, representing a gain of 29.90 points, or 0.72%.

Financials led the gains on increasing hopes of recovery. National Australia Bank, which was under selling pressure last week after raising funds by selling shares at a discount, gained 2.90%, Westpac Banking rose 2.77% and ANZ Bank edged up 0.29%. However, Commonwealth Bank of Australia bucked the trend and slipped 0.37% on profit taking.

Mixed trend was witnessed among metals, with BHP Billiton adding 0.45%, while Rio Tinto lost 0.57%. Among others, Fortescue Metals dropped 1.79%, Gindalbie Metals slumped 5.46% and Mincor Resources lost 2.44%. However, Minara Resources gained 5.38% and Oz Minerals advanced 0.87%. Macarthur Coal, the world's biggest exporter of pulverized coal, gained 4.10%.

Gold stocks also ended mixed. While Lihir Gold edged up 0.72% and Sino Gold gained 1.10%, Newcrest Mining ended in negative territory with a loss of 1.04%.

In the oil space, Woodside Petroleum edged up 0.07% and Oil Search Ltd rose 3.10%, but Santos bucked the trend and shed 0.20%.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index extended its gains further on optimism that economic recovery might start later in the year. The market opened slightly higher at 20,262 compared to its previous close at 20,252. After briefly drifting below the unchanged line on profit taking, the index moved northward as fresh money came into the market on expectation of revival. The market maintained the momentum throughout the session and ended with a gain of 372.92 points, or 1.84%, at 20,625.

As many as 37 of the 42 components in the index advanced on buying spree from investors. Property stocks and china related stocks led the gains.

In property space, Wharf Holdings surged up 5.17%, New World Development rose 4.37%, Hang Lung Properties gained 3.90% and Sino Land advanced 2.10%. Other major property stocks also ended in the green excluding Swire Pacific which slipped 0.49% on profit taking.

Telecommunication stocks also ended higher. Tencent Holdings added 0.78%, Hutchison Whimpoa advanced 1.35%, China Unicom gained 1.57% and China Mobile surged up 4.04%.

In South Korea, the benchmark KOSPI Index ended in positive territory led by foreign institutional investors who evinced interest on select blue chip stocks. The market opened slightly weaker at 1,521 compared to previous close at 1,524 and witnessed volatile trading as traders locked in gains following recent rally. However, selective buying by foreign institutional investors helped the index end with a marginal gain of 1.98 points, or 0.13% at 1,526.

Continued profit taking ahead of the expiry of July series derivative contracts on Thursday and a lack of surprise from the RBI on the policy front dragged the Indian market down. The BSE Sensex closed the session at 15,332, down 43 points or 0.28% from its previous close, while the S&P CNX Nifty fell 8 points or 0.18% to close at 4,564.

Among the other major markets in the region, China's Shanghai Composite Index added 3.16 points, or 0.09% to close at 3,438, Singapore's Strait Times Index advanced 47.38 points, or 1.84% to close at 2,624, Indonesia's Jakarta Composite Index added 28.00 points, or 1.27% to close at 2,237, and Taiwan's Weighted Index surged up 114.20 points, or 1.62% to close at 7,143.

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