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Japan, Australia Shares Close Higher in Light Trading

By Investors Hub

Many of the major Asian markets were closed for Labor Day on Tuesday, although stocks in Australia and Japan moved higher in light trading.

Investor sentiment was bolstered by news that the U.S. has extended the May 1st deadline on steel and aluminum tariff exemptions for the European Union, Canada and Mexico by a month.

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In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 Index climbed 32.50 points or 0.5 percent to 6,015.20, while the All Ordinaries Index rose 28.40 points or 0.5 percent to 6,100.00.

The higher close by Australian stocks came after Australia’s central bank decided to leave its key interest rate unchanged at a record low, as slow employment growth and housing market activity provided more space to maintain the status quo.

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The board of the Reserve Bank of Australia, governed by Philip Lowe, maintained the cash rate at 1.50 percent. The bank reduced the rate by 25-basis points each in August and May of last year.

“Taking account of the available information, the Board judged that holding the stance of monetary policy unchanged at this meeting would be consistent with sustainable growth in the economy and achieving the inflation target over time,” the bank said in a statement.

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Japanese stocks also saw modest strength on the day, with the Nikkei 225 Index edging up 40.16 points or 0.2 percent to 22,508.03.

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Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan.

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