By Associated Press and Marketwatch
Asian stocks were mostly higher on Monday as traders watched for developments on a fresh round of trade talks between American and Chinese officials in Beijing this week. Markets in China and Taiwan, reopening after a weeklong Lunar New Year break, posted broad gains.
The Shanghai Composite index /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP +1.21% surged 1.4%, while the smaller-cap Shenzhen Composite /zigman2/quotes/210598015/delayed CN:399106 +2.42% jumped 2%. The Kospi /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 -2.80% in South Korea gained 0.1% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI +1.54% rose 0.7%. Australia’s S&P ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO +1.74% slipped 0.2%. Stocks rose in Taiwan , but fell in Singapore /zigman2/quotes/210597985/delayed SG:STI +0.92% and Indonesia /zigman2/quotes/210597981/delayed ID:JAKIDX +1.55% . Japanese markets were closed for a holiday.
Among individual stocks, tech names such as AAC /zigman2/quotes/201441510/delayed HK:2018 +2.15% , Sunny Optical /zigman2/quotes/206687505/delayed HK:2382 +3.09% and Tencent /zigman2/quotes/204605823/delayed HK:700 +5.06% rose in Hong Kong, while real estate companies fell. Hyundai Motors /zigman2/quotes/206684590/delayed KR:005380 -3.27% rose in Korea, while Taiwan Semiconductor /zigman2/quotes/207385621/delayed TW:2330 -4.57% and Foxconn /zigman2/quotes/204111604/delayed TW:2354 -1.82% rose in Taiwan. Bank stocks fell in Australia, led by National Australia Bank /zigman2/quotes/210431826/delayed AU:NAB +2.03% and ANZ Banking /zigman2/quotes/205482049/delayed AU:ANZ +1.60% .
Gains by technology and consumer goods companies led most U.S. indexes higher on Friday. They more than balanced out losses by financial stocks and retailers after a mixed bag of quarterly earnings. The broad S&P 500 index /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -0.48% climbed 0.1% to 2,707.88 and the Nasdaq composite /zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime COMP +0.56% rose 0.1% to 7,298.20. The Dow Jones Industrial Average /zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime DJIA -1.50% lost 0.3% to 25,106.33.
Officials from the U.S. and China will gather in Beijing for trade talks on Thursday and Friday. U.S. Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin and trade representative Robert Lighthizer will lead the American delegation at the talks, which are aimed at bringing both sides closer to resolving deep-seated issues such as unhappiness over Beijing’s technology policy. Lower-level negotiations are set to begin Monday, but a resolution isn’t expected before a truce on tariffs expires in early March. Any agreement before then, or a simple extension of the truce, will be viewed as a positive for markets. If not, the U.S. is expected to raise import taxes from 10% to 25% on $200 billion in Chinese goods.
Axios on Sunday reported White House advisors are considering President Donald Trump’s Florida club, Mar-a-Lago, as a site for a potential summit with China’s Xi Jinping where a deal could be reached as soon as mid-March to end the trade war.
“For markets, after the worst December and best January in years, it appears that we are back at inflection point across various asset classes, waiting for direction yet again,” Jingyi Pan of IG said in a market commentary.
U.S. crude lost 46 cents to $52.26 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude , used to price international oils, shed 14 cents to $61.96 per barrel.
The dollar /zigman2/quotes/210561789/realtime/sampled USDJPY +0.0169% rose to 110.01 yen from 109.73 yen late Friday.