Asian markets were mostly up in early trading Thursday as trade-war tensions eased after President Donald Trump announced a two-week delay in implementing tariff hikes against $250 billion in Chinese goods.
In a pair of tweets late Wednesday, Trump said the tariff hikes, which had been scheduled to take effect Oct. 1, will be put off until Oct. 15 as a “gesture of good will.” Earlier in the day, China said it would exempt some U.S. goods from tariff hikes it intends to impose starting Sept. 17. The conciliatory moves appear to be efforts to create goodwill before the resumption of trade negotiations in early October.
In a positive sign, Trump and China appear “willing to negotiate to put an end to this trade war spat,” Stephen Innes, Asia-Pacific market strategist at AxiTrader, wrote in a note.
Investors were also optimistic of a rate cut by the European Central Bank later Thursday. Policy makers are expected to announce further monetary stimulus at a news conference Thursday morning, Eastern time.
gained 0.8% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index
slid 0.5% after Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing made an unsolicited $36.6 billion bid to buy London Stock Exchange. Stocks in mainland China gave up early gains, with the Shanghai Composite
and the Shenzhen Composite
last about flat. Stocks fell in Singapore
but rose in Taiwan
. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200
advanced 0.3%. South Korea’s Kospi was closed for a holiday.
Among individual stocks, Yahoo Japan
rose in Tokyo trading on reports it would buy a majority stake in e-commerce giant Zozo
. Rival Rakuten
fell on the news, while Honda
gained. In Hong Kong, AAC
and Galaxy Entertainment
rose while PetroChina
and AIA Group
declined. Largan Precision
gained again in Taiwan. Beach Energy
fell in Australia while Virgin Australia