Shares in Asia advanced on Friday, as investors step up buying despite another decline on Wall Street.
Benchmarks rose in Taipei, Tokyo, Shanghai and Hong Kong after US President Joe Biden on Thursday spoke with Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) amid growing frustration on the US side over stalled high-level engagement between the two leaders.
The yield on the 10-year US Treasury note was steady at 1.31 percent and US futures were higher.
Markets appeared to take in stride a decision by the European Central Bank on Thursday to dial back some of its massive emergency COVID-19 support for the economy amid signs of increasing business activity and consumer readiness to spend.
Analysts said investors that were reassured by European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde’s insistence that the shift was only a “recalibration” of existing stimulus — not a signal that COVID-19 support was being phased out.
In Taiwan, the TAIEX ended up 170.24 points, or 0.98 percent, at the day’s high of 17,474.57, after coming off a low of 17,270.28. It posted a weekly decline of 0.24 percent.
Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 gained 1.25 percent to 30,381.84, up 4.3 percent from a week earlier, while the broader TOPIX rose 1.29 percent to 2,091.65, rising 3.78 percent from a week earlier.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng jumped 1.91 percent to 26,205.91, up 1.17 percent weekly.
The Shanghai Composite Index climbed 0.27 percent to 3,703.11, posting a weekly gain of 3.39 percent.
South Korea’s KOSPI added 0.36 percent to 3,125.76, but lost 2.35 percent on the week.
India’s SENSEX rose 0.09 percent to 58,305.07, jumping 0.78 week-on-week, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was up 0.5 percent at 7,406.6, declining 1.55 percent from a week earlier.
Oanda Corp senior market analyst Jeffrey Halley said reports that Xi had been making soothing comments toward ASEAN and Australia had also provided traders with some optimism.
“All of that is music to the ears of the Asia-Pacific,” he said. “Improved trade with the region, tick. Potentially thawing relations with Australia; tick. President Biden and President Xi talking in person as the first step to warming relations between the two superpowers; tick, tick, tick, tick.”
Biden initiated the 90-minute call with Xi, which centered on discussing the way ahead for the US-China relationship.
Additional reporting by staff writer with AFP and CNA
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