Asian shares were rising Thursday amid renewed hopes a U.S. trade deal with China may be nearing, despite tough recent talk from President Donald Trump.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225
gained 0.7% in early trading, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200
added nearly 1%. South Korea’s Kospi
slipped 0.5%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng
was up 0.4% while the Shanghai Composite
rose 0.4%. Benchmark indexes in Taiwan
Among individual stocks, Nippon Steel
jumped in Tokyo trading, while SoftBank
, Fast Retailing
also posted gains. In Hong Kong, Apple component makers Sunny Optical
surged, and oil producer CNOOC
also rose. Hyundai Motor
sank in South Korea after announcing a $52 billion investment in electric and autonomous cars over the next five years. Beach Energy
and Woodside Petroleum
gained in Australia.
Shares on Wall Street finished higher Wednesday, with the gains snapped a three-day losing streak for the S&P 500. The U.S. market has swung sharply for months on every hint of progress about talks between the world’s largest economies, and Asian regional indexes have tended to reflect those fluctuations.
In the latest development, Bloomberg News reported that U.S. negotiators expect a “Phase 1” trade agreement to be completed before U.S. tariffs are set to rise on Chinese products Dec. 15.
The report came a day after Trump said he wouldn’t mind waiting until after the 2020 elections for a deal, a remark that officials reportedly called off the cuff but nevertheless sent markets skidding.
“The trade war will be the key driver of sentiment in the immediate few weeks,” DBS Group analysts wrote in a report.
The S&P 500
rose 19.56 points, or 0.6%, to 3,112.76. Despite recovering some losses, the index is still down 0.9% for the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average
climbed 146.97 points, or 0.5%, to 27,649.78. The Nasdaq composite
gained 46.03 points, or 0.5%, to 8,566.67.
Benchmark U.S. crude
lost 21 cents to $58.22 a barrel. It climbed $2.33, or 4.2%, to $58.43 per barrel Wednesday, as members of OPEC prepare to meet later this week and vote on production levels. Brent crude
, the international standard, slipped 7 cents to $62.93.
rose to 108.91 Japanese yen from 108.68 yen Wednesday.