Chinese stock markets started the week on a positive note as the benchmark Shanghai Composite hit a two-month high Monday after media reports said Beijing would resume offering cheap loans to stock brokerages which would then be passed on to investors looking to buy Chinese shares.
China's state margin lender, the China Securities Finance Corp., reportedly said it would resume some short-term lending after suspending parts of its business 18 months ago.
"It's a clear signal that regulators are ready to provide the market with easier, and cheaper funding," Wang Yu, analyst at Pacific Securities told Reuters.
Chinese markets outpaced other major bourses Monday, with the Shanghai Composite up 2.15 percent and the Shenzhen Composite up 2.68 percent. China’s Nasdaq-style ChiNext index was up 2.26 percent.
Other Asian markets were broadly up, with the exception of Japan’s Nikkei 225, which fell 1.25 percent Monday and South Korea’s Kospi, which closed 0.12 percent down. India’s BSE S&P Sensex was up 1.18 percent and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 0.06 percent.
In Europe, markets were mixed during morning trade with the DAX up 0.60 percent and the FTSE 100 up 0.06 percent. France’s CAC 40 was down 0.61 percent while the pan-European Stoxx 600 was up 0.17 percent.
In the U.S., stock futures were broadly up during early morning hours, with the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Index up 0.25 percent while stock futures on the Nasdaq were up 0.32 percent.