Asian stocks follow Wall St higher after rebound – Daily News

on Feb9
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BEIJING (AP) — Asian stocks rose Wednesday after Wall Street rebounded as investors waited for U.S. inflation data that might influence the pace of Federal Reserve interest rate hikes.

Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Sydney advanced.

Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 rose 0.8%, recovering from the previous day’s slide.

Investors are waiting for U.S. inflation data Thursday for signs of how quickly the Fed might pull back record-low interest rates and other stimulus to try to cool surging prices. Traders expect at least four rate hikes this year, starting next month.

Wall Street’s rebound “suggests an attempt by the equity bulls to regain some control,” Yeap Jun Rong of IG said in a report. “Much will depend on the upcoming U.S. inflation data to ease some concerns about tightening ahead.”

The Shanghai Composite Index advanced 0.8% to 3,481.24 and the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo gained 1.1% to 27,579.87. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong was 1.9% higher at 24,794.80.

The Kospi in Seoul rose 0.8% to 2,768.76 and Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 added 1.1% to 7,268.30.

India’s Sensex opened up 0.7% at 58,208.01. New Zealand and Southeast Asia markets rose.

On Wall Street, the S&P 500 rose to 4,521.54. The index is now about 5.7% below its Jan. 3 high.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.1% to 35,462.78. The Nasdaq composite advanced 1.3% to 14,194.45.

Smaller company stocks outpaced the broader market in a potential sign that investors are optimistic about economic growth. The Russell 2000 index of smaller stocks rose 1.6% to 2,045.37.

Markets have been volatile since Fed officials said in mid-December that plans to withdraw stimulus would be accelerated to cool inflation that is at multi-decade highs.

European and other central banks also are looking at when to withdraw stimulus.

The president of the European Central Bank, Christine Lagarde, said this week any rate hikes would be gradual. Investors expect the ECB to adopt a more hawkish policy at its March meeting after the board said last week inflation risks were rising.

Higher interest rates can depress stock prices by dampening economic activity and making it more expensive to borrow money to finance trading.

Economists expect Thursday’s data to show U.S. inflation accelerated to a four-decade high of 7.3% in January.

On Tuesday, the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note, or the difference between its market price and the payout at maturity, rose to 1.96%, its highest level since the start of the pandemic, from Monday’s 1.91%.

Technology companies accounted for a big slice of the S&P 500′s rally. Apple rose 1.8%.

Chipmaker Nvidia rose 1.5% after announcing it terminated its plan to buy chip designer Arm from SoftBank.

Retailers and other companies that rely on direct consumer spending helped lift the market. Amazon rose 2.2% and Home Depot gained 1.1%.

In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude gained 26 cents to $89.62 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell $1.96 the previous session to $89.36. Brent crude, the price basis for international oils, rose 25 cents to $91.03 per barrel in London. It lost $1.91 on Tuesday to $90.78.

The dollar declined to 115.48 yen from Tuesday’s 115.54 yen. The euro advanced to $1.1427 from $1.1413.

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