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Asian Shares Rise On Chinese Stimulus Hopes


Asian stocks finished broadly higher on Tuesday after the U.S. earnings season began on a positive note and China signaled more supportive measures in the near term to counter slowing growth.

Investors also looked ahead to a vote on British Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit deal later in the day. It is widely expected that May's Brexit proposal will be defeated in parliament.

China's Shanghai Composite Index ended up 34.58 points or 1.4 percent at 2,570.34 after China said it would aim to achieve "a good start" in the first quarter for the economy. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index soared 531.96 points or 2 percent to 26,830.29.

Japanese shares climbed to close near a one-month high as the yen dropped against the dollar, helping exporters' shares. The Nikkei 225 Index advanced 195.59 points or 1 percent to 20,555.29, its highest level since December 19th.

The broader Topix closed 0.9 percent higher at 1,542.72 as traders returned to their desks after a long holiday weekend.

Electronic makers led the surge, with Tokyo Electron, Kyocera Corp and TDK Corp jumping 3-4 percent. Nintendo soared 4.6 percent on buzz that the company could be Apple's next acquisition target.

Australian markets rose notably, led by banks after Citigroup reported fourth quarter earnings that beat analysts' estimates.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index climbed 41.20 points or 0.7 percent to 5,814.60, while the broader All Ordinaries Index ended up 38.60 points or 0.7 percent at 5,871.80.

Banks ANZ and Commonwealth rose 0.7 percent and 1 percent, respectively, and energy stocks Woodside Petroleum and Santos rose over 1 percent despite a 2 percent slump in crude oil prices overnight.

Coal miner Whitehaven Coal jumped 3.7 percent. Adult education provider Navitas soared 12.9 percent after saying it would back a sweetened A$2.09 billion ($1.51 billion) buyout offer from a consortium of its founder Red Jones and private equity firm BGH.

Shares of Hub24 rallied 6 percent. The investment and superannuation platform announced record net inflows of A$1.5 billion during the December quarter, up 167.4 percent from the prior corresponding period.

Seoul stocks rose sharply to end near a six-week closing high after reports suggested that Beijing will cut taxes and keep monetary policy flexible to prop up a slowing economy.

The benchmark Kospi jumped 32.66 points or 1.6 percent to close at 2,097.18. Tech heavyweights Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix rallied 2.6 percent and 3.1 percent, respectively.

New Zealand shares ended little changed, with the benchmark S&P/NZX 50 Index ending marginally lower at 8,964.58. Dairy giant A2 Milk gained 2.6 percent.

Overnight, U.S. stocks ended lower as disappointing Chinese trade data stirred fresh concerns about the global economic outlook. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.4 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite shed 0.9 percent and the S&P 500 declined half a percent.

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