Asian Stocks Extend Rally as Chinese Data Beat Expectations
By Investors Hub
Asian stocks closed broadly higher for the second straight day on Friday as Chinese trade data beat expectations and the U.S. Congress passed a stopgap spending bill to keep the government funded until December 22nd. Media reports also suggested that Britain and Ireland were close to a Brexit deal.
Chinese shares ended on a positive note after data from the General Administration of Customs showed the country’s exports grew at a faster than expected pace in November.
Chinese exports advanced 12.3 percent year-over-year in dollar terms, well above the 5.9 percent increase economists had forecast. Imports surged up 17.7 percent in November from a year ago, faster than the expected growth of 13.0 percent.
The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index gained 18.11 points or 0.6 percent to close at 3,290.17, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index jumped 336.66 points or 1.2 percent to 28,639.85.
Japanese shares led regional gains as the yen weakened and data showed Japan’s GDP grew an annual 2.5 percent in the July-September quarter, revised up from a preliminary estimate of 1.4 percent growth.
Another report showed that Japan posted a current account surplus of 2.176 trillion yen in October, up 40.7 percent from last year.
The Nikkei 225 Index finished 313 points or 1.4 percent higher at 22,811.08, and the broader Topix index closed 1 percent higher at 1,803.73.
Property developers, trading houses, automakers and technology shares led the gainers. Japan Display jumped as much as 8.4 percent on a Nikkei report that Apple may use liquid crystal technology on one of its models expected next year.
Australian shares finished modestly higher, led by financial and energy shares, helped by encouraging home loans data and a firm lead from Wall Street overnight.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 16.65 points or 0.3 percent to 5,994.37, while the broader All Ordinaries Index ended up 16.60 points or 0.3 percent at 6,077.40.
Banks Commonwealth, NAB and Westpac rose between half a percent and 0.8 percent. Insurance Australia Group edged up 0.3 percent after the insurer struck deals with a trio of European reinsurers to share its premiums.
Energy stocks closed broadly higher in tandem with oil prices, while mining heavyweights BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto ended modestly lower.