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Asian Shares Hold Firm In Cautious Trade

Asian stocks held firm in early trade on Wednesday as U.S.-China tensions ebbed and investors awaited key central bank policy announcements, including the European Central Bank on Thursday and the U.S. Federal Reserve next week.

China has scrapped quotas on a pair of high-profile inbound investment schemes, giving global traders unfettered access to the world's second-largest capital market in another move in the country's economic liberalization.

The dollar held near a six-week high against the yen while oil prices held firm near their highest levels in six weeks.

China's Shanghai Composite index was down 0.4 percent at 3,009 as caution prevailed ahead of the next round of U.S.-China trade talks that are likely to restart next week.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng index was gaining half a percent as investors bet on fresh easing measures from leading central banks.

Japan's Nikkei index was up 0.6 percent, hitting a six-week high as banks extended gains on rising bond yields. A cheaper yen also buoyed sentiment.

Australia's benchmark S&P/ASX 200 was moving up 0.1 percent, with miners pacing the gainers on expectations that Beijing would implement more economic stimulus to boost steel demand.

South Korea's Kospi average was climbing 0.7 percent ahead of a long holiday weekend. The local markets will be closed Thursday and Friday for the Chuseok holiday, the Korean autumn harvest celebration.

Overnight, U.S. stocks ended mixed after the release of underwhelming Chinese inflation data and amid reports that Beijing will buy more American agricultural products to position itself for a better trade deal.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 0.3 percent and the S&P 500 inched up marginally while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite index ended flat with a negative bias.

European markets advanced on Tuesday as investors awaited central bank meetings and watched the latest developments on the Brexit front after British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that he would not request an extension to Brexit.

The pan European Stoxx 600 gained 0.1 percent. The German DAX and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 both rose around 0.4 percent while France's CAC 40 index inched up 0.1 percent.

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