News / World

Asian shares rise on Wall Street gains, upbeat Japan data

FILE - This March 4, 2013, file photo shows a sign for Wall Street on the side of a building near the New York Stock Exchange. U.S. stocks perked higher in early trading, Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, and the Standard & Poor’s 500 index was on track for its first gain in five days. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

FILE - This March 4, 2013, file photo shows a sign for Wall Street on the side of a building near the New York Stock Exchange. U.S. stocks perked higher in early trading, Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, and the Standard & Poor’s 500 index was on track for its first gain in five days. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

HONG KONG — Asian share indexes advanced Friday, guided by Wall Street gains and healthy quarterly economic data from Japan.

KEEPING SCORE: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 1.1 per cent to 22,741.23 and South Korea's Kospi advanced 0.2 per cent to 2,466.71. Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 0.6 per cent to 28,480.70 and the Shanghai Composite in mainland China added 0.3 per cent to 3,280.13. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 climbed 0.3 per cent to 5,993.60.

JAPAN DATA: Government data showed Asia's second-largest economy expanded at an annualized 2.5 per cent in the third quarter. That's an improvement on an earlier estimate, reflecting stronger than expected business investment and rising inventories, while demand perked up. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was expected later Friday to outline plans for longer-term efforts to shore up growth and productivity.

US SHUTDOWN: Congress passed a stopgap bill to avert a government shutdown over the weekend. The move keeps the government running until Dec. 22, buying more time for unfinished talks on a range of issues and averting market risks for investors for the day.

QUOTEWORTHY: "Early movers in the Asia region were seen emerging from the gloom this morning, the likes of Japan and South Korea markets kicking off in black," said Jingyi Pan, strategist at CMC Markets in Singapore. "Notably, Japan's equity market was seen receiving a boost from the latest upward revision" of third quarter GDP," she said.

WALL STREET: Major U.S. benchmarks perked higher following a weeklong lull. The S&P 500 rose 0.3 per cent to 2,636.98, the Dow Jones industrials average rose 0.3 per cent to 24,211.48 and the Nasdaq composite gained 0.5 per cent to 6,812.84

ENERGY: Oil futures retreated. Benchmark U.S. crude slipped 7 cents to $56.62 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract added 73 cents to settle at $56.69 per barrel. Brent crude, the international standard, rose lost 8 cents to $62.12 a barrel in London.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 113.36 Japanese yen from 113.10 yen late Thursday. The euro dipped to $1.766 from $1.1774.

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