Asian stocks climbed, after the regional benchmark index yesterday erased this year’s gain, as U.S. economic data beat estimates and concern eased that the Federal Reserve will reduce record stimulus.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 Stock Average rose after entering a bear market yesterday. Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd. (7012) rose 4.3 percent in Tokyo after removing its president and ending merger talks with Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. (7003) China Overseas Land & Investment Ltd. added 1.2 percent in Hong Kong on a report of rising homes sales in Beijing.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 1 percent to 130.43 as of 5:19 p.m. in Tokyo, heading for a gain of less than 0.1 percent this week. The gauge yesterday closed at the lowest since Dec. 27 after dropping more than 10 percent from a May 20 high, meeting some traders’ definition of a correction. The index erased $1.06 trillion in value during that span through yesterday. A measure of mainland shares listed in Hong Kong capped a record losing streak.
“You get good data plus reduced fear about a premature rate hike from the U.S. Federal Reserve, and that helped the U.S. share market and that’s helping Japanese and Asian markets today,” said Shane Oliver, Sydney-based head of investment strategy at AMP Capital Investors Ltd., which has $126 billion under management. “Look at the underlying global growth dynamics and they remain favorable.”
The Asia-Pacific measure traded at 12.5 times estimated earnings as of yesterday, compared with 14.8 times for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (SPX) and 12.9 for the Stoxx Europe 600 Index, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The MSCI Asia Pacific excluding Japan Index lost more than 10 percent through yesterday from its May 9 high on concern a pickup in the U.S. economy may prompt the Fed to taper stimulus. The gauge rose 1.4 percent today.
All 10 industry groups on the MSCI Asia Pacific Index advanced, led by consumer and utility shares, and about three shares gained for each that fell. Financial stocks contributed the most to today’s rally as Australian lenders gained.
National Australia Bank Ltd., the nation’s fourth-biggest lender by market value, rose 3.6 percent to A$29.38. Westpac Banking Corp., the No. 2, advanced 2.7 percent to A$28.94.
Futures on the S&P 500 were little changed. The gauge added 1.5 percent yesterday in New York, the biggest gain since January. Reports yesterday showed retail sales climbed the most in three months and jobless claims dropped. The Wall Street Journal reported that the Fed may “push back” on market expectations of higher interest rates.
Techtronic Industries Co. (669), a maker of power tools that generates most its revenue in North America, gained 2.2 percent to HK$18.60 in Hong Kong. Mazda Motor Corp., an automaker that gets 29 percent of its sales from the U.S. and Canada, added 1.7 percent to 352 yen after slumping 6.2 percent yesterday.
Japan’s Topix index gained 1.2 percent and the Nikkei 225 added 1.9 percent. South Korea’s Kospi index rose 0.4 percent on National Pension Service plans to allocate more funds to overseas equities as the country’s biggest investor seeks to boost returns.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 climbed 2 percent after entering a correction yesterday. New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index added 0.4 percent in Wellington.
The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index (HSCEI) of mainland companies listed in Hong Kong fell 0.2 percent, capping a 12-day loss, a record streak of declines. Aluminum Corp. of China droped 7.5 percent to HK$2.60, falling the most on the gauge, which entered a bear market yesterday.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index climbed 0.4 percent. The Shanghai Composite Index, which tracks the mainland’s largest share market, rose 0.6 percent. Taiwan’s Taiex Index fell 0.2 percent. Singapore’s Straits Times Index gained 0.6 percent.
Chinese developers advanced on Xinhua News Agency report that Beijing home sales soared 40 percent in the five months through May, citing government data.
China Overseas Land rose 1.2 percent to HK$20.75. Guangzhou R&F Properties Co. advanced 4.8 percent to HK$12.62. Country Garden Holdings Co., a homebuilder controlled by billionaire Yang Huiyan, climbed 0.8 percent to HK$3.90.
Kawasaki Heavy, Japan’s second-biggest maker of heavy equipment, advanced 4.3 percent to 319 yen after firing President Satoshi Hasegawa and ending merger talks with Mitsui Engineering, two months after denying such discussions. Mitsui Engineering dropped 5.5 percent to 137 yen, the biggest loss on the Nikkei 225.
ASX Ltd. slumped 6.1 percent to A$33.15 in Sydney after the operator of Australia’s main stock exchange completed the first part of an A$553 million ($530 million) capital raising to ensure its clearing business complies with new regulations.
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