Most Asian markets rose Thursday following a positive lead from Wall Street, while the pound was marginally higher as traders await the next Brexit move with the EU expected to extend Britain’s divorce deadline yet again.
While US earnings on Wednesday were a mixed bag, investors remain broadly upbeat after better-than-forecast results so far have soothed worries about the impact of slowing economic growth on companies.
“People were bracing for the worst” for businesses, Yana Barton at Eaton Vance Management said. “So far we’re coming in a little bit better,” she told Bloomberg TV.
In afternoon trade, Hong Kong was up 0.6 percent while Tokyo closed with gains of 0.6 percent. Seoul added 0.2 percent as dealers brushed off data showing the South Korean economy grew in the third quarter at a slower pace than expected, putting it on course for the worst annual performance since the global financial crisis.
Sydney, Singapore, Mumbai, Taipei and Jakarta were also well up. Shanghai was marginally lower while Wellington and Bangkok were also in the red. London opened up 0.2 percent, while Paris and Frankfurt were each up 0.5 percent.
The positive mood comes as China and the US look on track to sign a mini trade deal next month and set up talks for the next phase of a wider agreement to end their long-running tariffs war. Hopes that Britain will leave the European Union with a divorce pact have also improved sentiment.
While Boris Johnson failed to push his agreement with the bloc in time to meet the October 31 cut-off date, he did manage to get MPs to agree to it.—AFP