Asian markets rose Friday, led by China stocks the country took a step to appease U.S. trade negotiators and the country’s premier spoke of more stimulus for the economy.
Chinese legislators on Friday approved a new law against the forced transfer of technology by foreign companies, which has been a major complaint by the U.S. and other countries. The move was intended to smooth the path to a trade deal, but it’s unclear if it will be enough.
President Donald Trump said Wednesday he was in no hurry to make a deal, and said the U.S. could still walk away from negotiations if terms aren’t to his liking. On Thursday, chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow said a summit between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping likely won’t happen until after trade negotiations are settled, adding that Xi is “afraid” to sit down with Trump over fears Trump may walk out at the last minute. Kudlow said Xi wants a signing ceremony, not a negotiating session, the Associated Press reported.
Meanwhile, investors relaxed slightly as the threat of global financial chaos receded a bit as British lawmakers approved a measure to seek to push the Brexit deadline back to June.
China shares also rose as Premier Li Keqiang reportedly said on Friday that the government has more monetary policy measures it can use to support growth this year and will cut “its own flesh” to help finance tax cuts.
On mainland China, the Shanghai Composite /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP -0.19% closed up 1% and the smaller-cap Shenzhen Composite /zigman2/quotes/210598015/delayed CN:399106 -0.16% rose 1.4%. Japan’s Nikkei /zigman2/quotes/210597971/delayed JP:NIK -0.09% rose 0.8%, while South Korea’s Kospi /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 +1.69% gained 0.9%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI -1.17% gained 0.6%, Taiwan’s benchmark index rose 0.9% and Singapore’s /zigman2/quotes/210597985/delayed SG:STI -1.26% was flat, along with Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO +0.96% . New Zealand’s NSX 50 /zigman2/quotes/211587880/delayed NZ:NZ50GR +0.22% rose 0.4%. The small nation was rocked by a mass shooting at a mosque in Christchurch on Friday.
Among individual stocks, Tokyo Electron /zigman2/quotes/202883609/delayed JP:8035 0.00% rose in Tokyo trading, along with Nintendo and Mitsubishi Motors /zigman2/quotes/202404490/delayed JP:7211 +0.32% . Sunny Optical /zigman2/quotes/206687505/delayed HK:2382 -3.28% surged in Hong Kong, as Galaxy Entertainment /zigman2/quotes/202884203/delayed HK:27 -1.85% and Ping An Insurance /zigman2/quotes/210315058/delayed HK:2318 -0.72% advanced as well. SK Hynix /zigman2/quotes/206420319/delayed KR:000660 +1.78% rose in Korea, as did fellow chip maker Taiwan Semiconductor /zigman2/quotes/207385621/delayed TW:2330 +0.71% in Taiwan. Mining stocks like BHP /zigman2/quotes/201448516/delayed AU:BHP -0.73% declined in Australia, while energy stocks mostly gained.