TOKYO (Reuters) – Asian stocks were near a decade high on Thursday, riding the bull run in global equity markets, while the dollar sagged after the Federal Reserve showed a guarded view towards inflation.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.15 percent and is within a hair of the decade high touched in the previous session.
Japan - Nikkei - Percent - December - South
Japan’s Nikkei was up 0.4 percent after brushing 20,980.92, its highest since December 1996. South Korea’s KOSPI added 0.1 percent to mark a fresh record high.
Broader investor risk sentiment has improved this week after Catalonia dialed back plans to break away from Spain, with MSCI’s 47-country world stocks index reaching a record high.
Equities - Developments - Secessionist - Push - Spain
Global equities now appear to be taking geopolitical developments such as the secessionist push in Spain and tensions on the Korean peninsula in their stride to reach those record tops.
“Fundamentally, the global economy is in decent shape. Corporate sentiment is also sound as evidenced by strong data like the Chinese PMI, U.S. ISM and Japanese tankan. All these factors are leading to the rise in global stocks,” said Masahiro Ichikawa, senior strategist at Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management in Tokyo.
Markets - Headlines - Conflicts - Responses - Equities
“Financial markets will remain wary of geopolitical headlines. But barring actual military conflicts, negative responses by equities are expected to be short-lived.”
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