Asian shares on Friday posted weekly gains after US president-elect Joe Biden was projected to win the battleground state of Arizona, cementing his win for the office.
The projection by Edison Research dealt another blow to US President Donald Trump’s struggling effort to overturn the results of the Nov. 3 presidential election.
The MSCI All Country Asia-Pacific ex-Japan index on Friday rose 0.45 percent to 612.92, up 1.1 percent for the week.
However, apart from Taipei and Seoul, most major regional indices were lower on Friday.
The TAIEX on Friday added 0.4 percent to 13,273.33, up 2.3 percent for the week.
South Korea’s KOSPI on Friday rose 0.74 percent, climbing 3.2 percent for the week
Australia’s S&P/ASX 100 on Friday lost 0.24 percent, paring its weekly gain to 3.6 percent.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng on Friday fell 0.05 percent, but was up 1.7 percent for the week, and Chinese blue chips slumped 1.57 percent, dragged lower by the Trump administration’s decision to ban US investments in firms linked to the Chinese military and by a series of high-profile bond defaults by state-owned enterprises.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 0.53 percent, but rose 4.36 percent for the week. The TOPIX lost 1.33 percent on Friday, paring its weekly gain to 2.7 percent.
India’s SENSEX on Friday rose 0.2 percent, carrying its weekly gain to 3.7 percent.
FTSE Bursa Malaysia slipped 0.07 percent, but posted a weekly gain of 4.6 percent.
Some investors saw a buying opportunity in the market weakness.
“My view is this is the dark just before dawn,” said Michael Frazis, portfolio manager at Frazis Capital Partners in Sydney.
“You’ve got the second wave of coronavirus, new sets of shutdowns, clear problems around the world, travel dropping off again... But at the same time, we have the strongest possible evidence that we do have a vaccine,” he said.
“We think this is all actually very positive and it’s actually a good time to be investing in markets,” he added.
Frazis said many risks nevertheless remained for short-term traders amid ongoing uncertainty over issues such as fresh US stimulus.
On Thursday, top Democrats in the US Congress urged renewed negotiations over a multitrillion-dollar COVID-19 aid proposal, but the top Republican immediately rejected their approach as too expensive, continuing a months-long impasse.
Investors got a further reminder of the risks to the recovery after three of the world’s top central bankers warned that the prospect of a vaccine is not enough to put an end to the economic challenges created by the pandemic.
“We’re experiencing a bit of exhaustion for the market as we focus on the troubling near-term COVID trends and the potential for a few tough months ahead,” Stonex Group Inc global market strategist Yousef Abbasi said.
Additional reporting by Bloomberg, with staff writer
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