By Associated Press and Marketwatch
Asian shares were rising Thursday amid renewed hopes a U.S. trade deal with China may be nearing, despite tough recent talk from President Donald Trump.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 /zigman2/quotes/210597971/delayed JP:NIK +1.80% gained 0.7% in early trading, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO -0.48% added nearly 1%. South Korea’s Kospi /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 +1.00% slipped 0.5%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI +0.77% was up 0.4% while the Shanghai Composite /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP -0.16% rose 0.4%. Benchmark indexes in Taiwan /zigman2/quotes/210597977/delayed TW:Y9999 +0.90% , Singapore /zigman2/quotes/210597985/delayed SG:STI +0.62% and Indonesia /zigman2/quotes/210597981/delayed ID:JAKIDX -0.09% advanced.
Among individual stocks, Nippon Steel /zigman2/quotes/209782682/delayed JP:5401 +7.50% jumped in Tokyo trading, while SoftBank /zigman2/quotes/207303954/delayed JP:9984 +1.57% , Fast Retailing /zigman2/quotes/200663563/delayed JP:9983 +3.43% and Honda /zigman2/quotes/200490352/delayed JP:7267 +2.66% also posted gains. In Hong Kong, Apple component makers Sunny Optical /zigman2/quotes/206687505/delayed HK:2382 -0.16% and AAC /zigman2/quotes/201441510/delayed HK:2018 +0.35% surged, and oil producer CNOOC /zigman2/quotes/203421416/delayed HK:883 +2.37% also rose. Hyundai Motor /zigman2/quotes/206684590/delayed KR:005380 0.00% sank in South Korea after announcing a $52 billion investment in electric and autonomous cars over the next five years. Beach Energy /zigman2/quotes/200513631/delayed AU:BPT -1.17% and Woodside Petroleum /zigman2/quotes/203437212/delayed AU:WPL +0.78% gained in Australia.
Shares on Wall Street finished higher Wednesday, with the gains snapped a three-day losing streak for the S&P 500. The U.S. market has swung sharply for months on every hint of progress about talks between the world’s largest economies, and Asian regional indexes have tended to reflect those fluctuations.
In the latest development, Bloomberg News reported that U.S. negotiators expect a “Phase 1” trade agreement to be completed before U.S. tariffs are set to rise on Chinese products Dec. 15.
The report came a day after Trump said he wouldn’t mind waiting until after the 2020 elections for a deal, a remark that officials reportedly called off the cuff but nevertheless sent markets skidding.
“The trade war will be the key driver of sentiment in the immediate few weeks,” DBS Group analysts wrote in a report.
The S&P 500 /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -0.0077% rose 19.56 points, or 0.6%, to 3,112.76. Despite recovering some losses, the index is still down 0.9% for the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average /zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime DJIA +0.12% climbed 146.97 points, or 0.5%, to 27,649.78. The Nasdaq composite /zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime COMP -0.14% gained 46.03 points, or 0.5%, to 8,566.67.
Benchmark U.S. crude lost 21 cents to $58.22 a barrel. It climbed $2.33, or 4.2%, to $58.43 per barrel Wednesday, as members of OPEC prepare to meet later this week and vote on production levels. Brent crude , the international standard, slipped 7 cents to $62.93.
The dollar /zigman2/quotes/210561789/realtime/sampled USDJPY +0.0266% rose to 108.91 Japanese yen from 108.68 yen Wednesday.