Asian Shares Mostly Up As Covid Worries Ease

Asian stocks finished broadly higher on Tuesday after reports that Shanghai was seeing a strong recovery from COVID cases, with plans in pace to ease lockdown restrictions in stages.

The upside, however, remained capped by uncertainty over the shift in Fed policy and lingering concerns about elevated food and fuel costs.

China’s Shanghai Composite index rose 0.65 percent to 3,093.70 after Shanghai reportedly hit a milestone of three days of zero community transmission, which could see the city ease out of its grueling lockdown.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index jumped as much as 3.27 percent to 20,602.52, with Chinese tech stocks leading the surge.

Japanese shares extended gains for the third day running on optimism over the relaxation of Shanghai’s lockdowns and the easing of China’s corporate crackdown. The Nikki average rose 0.42 percent to 26,659.75.

Inpex soared 5.6 percent and Japan Petroleum rallied 3.6 percent following an overnight rally in oil prices on expectations for a recovery in Chinese demand.

Brewer Asahi Holdings plunged 10.9 percent and advertising giant Dentsu plummeted 6.2 percent on disappointing financial results.

Seoul stocks rose sharply as investors looked to buy quality companies at discounted prices. The Kospi average gained 0.92 percent to settle at 2,620.44.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics, No. 2 chipmaker SK Hynix and battery maker LG Energy Solution all rose about 2 percent.

Australian markets rose for a third straight session, though overall gains remained limited after minutes from the RBA’s May meeting showed the central bank could further increase interest rates in June.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 edged up 0.27 percent to 7,112.50, led by gains in the mining and energy stocks. Tech stocks underperformed, with Block and Xero losing 3.3 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively.

James Hardie Industries lost 3.5 percent after the fibre cement products maker reported annual profit towards the lower end of its forecast range.

New Zealand shares ended a choppy session slightly lower, with the benchmark NZX-50 index closing 0.18 percent lower at 11,137.88.

Steel and Tube gave up 5.5 percent and Fletcher Building declined 2.7 percent, while Ryman Healthcare surged 4.4 percent after having lost 7 percent in the previous session ahead of its deletion from an MSCI global index.

U.S. stocks ended a volatile session mostly lower overnight amid growth worries as China data disappointed, New York state manufacturing activity unexpectedly contracted in May and the outlook for EU growth and inflation worsened.

The Dow edged up marginally while the S&P 500 slipped 0.4 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite lost 1.2 percent.

Source: Read Full Article