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Asian Shares Mixed After U.S. Stocks Fall

asiancommentary dec03 11sep20 lt

Asian stocks ended mixed on Friday following the weak cues from Wall Street overnight as tech stocks resumed their decline after a one-day respite and U.S. lawmakers failed to reach agreement on a new coronavirus stimulus bill.

Shares in China and Hong Kong rose as investors shrugged off the weak cues from Wall Street and went bargain hunting.

China's Shanghai Composite Index added 25.52 points or 0.8 percent to close at 3,260.35, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index advanced 189.77 points or 0.8 percent to 24,503.31. Gaming and tech stocks rallied in Hong Kong. Yum China Holdings added 1.4 percent after falling yesterday in its Hong Kong trading debut.

Japanese shares recovered after a weak start to close higher for the second consecutive day. Investor sentiment was boosted by news that the Tokyo Metropolitan Government plans to ease voluntary restrictions on dining and travel amid a downward trend in coronavirus infections in the capital city.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 Index climbed 171.02 points or 0.7 percent to 23,406.49, while the broader Topix rose 11.78 points, or 0.7 percent, to 1,636.64.

Market heavyweight SoftBank Group added 1.0 percent and Fast Retailing gained 1.1 percent.

Meanwhile, the Australian market declined, tracking the losses on Wall Street and on worries about rising tensions between Australia and its biggest trading partner China.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index dropped 49.10 points, or 0.8 percent, to close at 5,859.40 and the broader All Ordinaries Index fell 51.10 points, or 0.8 percent, to 6,038.90.

In the tech space, Afterpay dropped 2.3 percent, Appen declined 1.9 percent, and WiseTech Global lost 1.5 percent.

Among the major miners, Fortescue Metals lost 3.1 percent and BHP Group dropped 1.2 percent following an overnight fall in iron ore futures.

Rio Tinto's shares declined 0.6 percent after the mining giant said that its chief executive Jean-Sebastien Jacques and two other executives have resigned following investor pressure over the destruction of the Juukan Gorge rockshelters in Western Australia.

New Zealand shares dipped and ended with losses for the second consecutive week after data showed that the manufacturing sector in New Zealand continued to expand in August, but at a much slower pace. The benchmark NZX 50 Index lost 63.75 points, or 0.5 percent to close at 11,748.03.

Genesis Energy fell 3.4 percent and Fisher & Paykel Healthcare dropped 1.5 percent.

Seoul stocks pared early losses to close almost unchanged but finished with a weekly gain of more than 1 percent. The benchmark Kospi edged up 0.21 points to finish at 2,396.69.

Market bellwether Samsung Electronics declined 0.3 percent, while chipmaker SK Hynix rose 2.4 percent. Kakao Games Corp., the gaming subsidiary of messaging app operator Kakao Corp., hit the daily permissible limit of 30 percent for the second consecutive day.

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