Gathering of Asian markets; China keeps its key rate unchanged

SINGAPORE — Stocks in the Asia-Pacific region surged on Wednesday after a strong rebound in U.S. stocks overnight.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan rose 2.33% with Fast Retailing and Tokyo Electron up 1.75% and 4.98% respectively. The Topix index gained 1.92%.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 2.03% and the Hang Seng Tech Index rose 2.77%. Tencent jumped 2.52% and Meituan 3.65%.

A little good news goes a long way in this market.

Tai Hui

Chief Global Market Strategist for APAC, JPMorgan Asset Management

The South Korean Kospi rose 0.98% and the Kosdaq 1.33%.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 rose 1.76%.

Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Philip Lowe said on Wednesday that inflation for the June quarter to be released next week will show further acceleration and that there must be a return to inflation of 2 % to 3%.

Prices rose 5.1% in the March quarter. In his speech, Lowe also said that the nominal neutral rate is at least 2.5%, while current rates are at 1.35%.

Mainland China markets increased. The Shanghai Composite gained 0.71% and the Shenzhen Component rose 0.92%.

China kept its prime rates on one-year and five-year loans unchanged at 3.7% and 4.45% on Wednesday.

MSCI’s broadest Asia-Pacific ex-Japan equity index rose 1.3%.

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US stocks rallied on Tuesday in the United States after strong earnings reports.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 754.44 points, or 2.43%, to 31,827.05. The S&P 500 jumped 2.76% to 3,936.69 and the Nasdaq Composite rose 3.11% to 11,713.15.

Apart from the positive lead from Wall Street, it was also reported that Russia and Ukraine were close to reaching an agreement that would end the blockade of grain exports and that Nord Stream 1 should restart gas exports in the delays once the maintenance is finished.

“There is still a lot of uncertainty as to whether they will actually materialize, [but] a little bit of good news does a lot in this market,” Tai Hui, chief global market strategist for APAC at JPMorgan Asset Management, told CNBC in a phone call today.

That said, it will likely be a near-term rebound in the market as uncertainties about the Fed and corporate earnings remain, he said.

In company news, Japanese automaker Toyota said its August production will be around 700,000 units, lower than the previously announced figure of 850,000 units, due to a shortage of parts linked to disruptions in Covid.

Shares of Toyota were up 0.67% on Wednesday.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 106.602, after falling sharply.

The Japanese yen was trading at 138.13 to the dollar, stronger than levels seen last week. The Australian dollar was at $0.6899, strengthening from the start of the week.

Bitcoin continued to gain ground, sitting above $23,000 at $23,417.87 as of 10:26 p.m. ET on Tuesday.

U.S. crude futures fell 0.66% to $103.53 a barrel, while Brent crude fell 0.35% to $106.97 a barrel. Both benchmarks were 1% higher in the previous session.

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