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Asian Markets Notably Higher On Partial U.S.-China Trade Deal

asian up 13oct19 lt

Asian stock markets are notably higher on Monday as investor sentiment was boosted by news that the U.S. and China have reached a partial trade deal. The markets in Japan and Thailand are closed for holidays.

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday that the two countries have reached a "very substantial phase one deal," that includes up to $40 billion to $50 billion in Chinese purchases of U.S. agricultural products as well as Chinese concessions on intellectual property and financial services. In exchange for the Chinese concessions, the U.S. has agreed to hold off on an increase in tariffs originally scheduled for next week.

The Australian market is extending gains from Friday, as investor sentiment was boosted by news that the U.S. and China reached a partial trade deal at the end of last week.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is adding 53.90 points or 0.82 percent to 6,660.70, after rising to a high of 6,676.20 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is rising 54.50 points or 0.81 percent to 6,776.40. Australian stocks rose sharply on Friday.

Oil stocks are rising after crude oil prices gained more than 2 percent on Friday. Oil Search and Woodside Petroleum are higher by 2 percent each.

Santos is gaining almost 7 percent after the company said it will buy ConocoPhillips' northern Australia business for up to $1.44 billion.

Among the major miners, Rio Tinto is gaining almost 3 percent, BHP Billiton is rising more than 2 percent and Fortescue Metals is advancing more than 1 percent.

The big four banks - National Australia Bank, Commonwealth Bank, ANZ Banking and Westpac - are higher in a range of 0.8 percent to 1.3 percent despite the Australia Competition and Consumer Commission or ACCC saying it will probe the banks over their failure to pass on the cash rate cuts in full to home loan customers.

Bucking the trend, gold miners are weak after safe-haven gold prices fell to a near two-week low on Friday. Evolution Mining is lower by 3 percent and Newcrest Mining is losing more than 3 percent.

In the currency market, the Australian dollar is higher against the U.S. dollar on Monday. The local currency was quoted at $0.6793, up from $0.6776 on Friday.

Elsewhere in Asia, Shanghai, South Korea, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Taiwan are all higher by more than 1 percent each, while Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia are also higher. The markets in Japan and Thailand are closed on Monday for the Health and Sports Day and King Bhumibol Memorial Day, respectively.

On Wall Street, stocks closed sharply higher on Friday as traders expressed continued optimism about U.S.-China trade talks, with President Donald Trump saying that the two countries have reached a "very substantial phase one deal."

The Dow jumped 319.92 points or 1.2 percent to 26,816.59, the Nasdaq spiked 106.26 points or 1.3 percent to 8,057.04 and the S&P 500 surged up 32.14 points or 1.1 percent to 2,970.27.

The major European markets also showed strong moves to the upside on Friday. While the German DAX Index spiked by 2.9 percent, the French CAC 40 Index surged up by 1.7 percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index advanced by 0.8 percent.

Crude oil prices rose sharply on Friday on supply concerns after an Iranian oil tanker exploded in the Red Sea after being hit by missiles launched from the Saudi Arabian port of Jeddah. WTI crude for November delivery surged up $1.15 or about 2.2 percent to $54.70 a barrel.

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