By Associated Press
TOKYO — Asian shares were mixed Tuesday after a Wall Street rally that reflected some optimism about the economy recovering from the pandemic.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 /zigman2/quotes/210597971/delayed JP:NIK +2.32% lost early gains and fell 1% in morning trading. South Korea’s Kospi /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 +1.00% was flat while the Shanghai Composite /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP +1.77% slipped 0.3%. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO +0.45% rose 1.1%. Stocks slipped in Singapore /zigman2/quotes/210597985/delayed SG:STI -2.18% , but advanced in Taiwan /zigman2/quotes/210597977/delayed TW:Y9999 +1.00% and Indonesia /zigman2/quotes/210597981/delayed ID:JAKIDX -0.63% . Hong Kong trading was closed for a holiday.
Yoshimasa Maruyama, chief market economist at SMBC Nikko, noted a gradual recovery in the Japanese economy had been reflected in the recent “tankan” Bank of Japan survey, which was released last week. He said a rebound was marked in electronics because of households consuming electronics goods, as the pandemic had squelched people’s spending on services.
However, household spending data released Tuesday showed a 6.6% decline in February, with dining, clothing, transport and entertainment falling sharply.
Deep worries remain over the pandemic, with medical experts warning Japan to brace for a “fourth wave” of surging infections and deaths related to COVID-19, as the nation has fallen behind the rest of the world in testing and vaccinations.
Similar outbreaks have flared in other countries, including India and Thailand.
On Wall Street, the S&P 500 /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX +1.49% rose 1.4% to 4,077.91, another record high. The Dow Jones Industrial Average /zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime DJIA +1.06% rose 379 points, or 1.2%, to 33,527.19 and the Nasdaq /zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime COMP +2.32% was 1.6% higher, at 13,705.59.
The gains came after the U.S. government reported that employers went on a hiring spree in March, adding 916,000 jobs, the most since August.
Traders had a delayed reaction to the encouraging jobs report, which was released on Friday when stock trading was closed. Investors were further encouraged by a report Monday showing that the services sector recorded record growth in March as orders, hiring and prices surged.
In energy trading, benchmark U.S. crude added 69 cents to $59.34 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It gave up $2.80 to $58.65 per barrel on Monday. Brent crude , the international standard, rose 56 cents to $62.71 a barrel.
In currency trading, the U.S. dollar /zigman2/quotes/210561789/realtime/sampled USDJPY +0.0265% rose to 110.24 Japanese yen from 110.19 yen.