Asian Shares Mostly Higher Ahead Of U.S. Jobs Report

asian mixed 08oct21 lt

Asian stocks ended Friday's session mostly higher amid relieved concerns of a possible U.S. government default this month. Investors eyed key U.S. jobs data due out later in the day for any fresh insight into the timing of Federal Reserve tapering.

Chinese shares advanced as traders returned from a one-week holiday. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index climbed 24.00 points, or 0.7 percent, to 3,592.17, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index rose 136.12 points, or 0.6 percent, to 24,837.85.

As investors reel from Beijing's regulatory crackdown, People's Bank of China Governor Yi Gang said that regulators would continue to curb monopolistic behavior among internet platforms as well as strengthen consumer and data protection.

Japanese shares rose for a second day after a truce in the U.S. debt-ceiling standoff. The Nikkei 225 Index ended up 370.73 points, or 1.3 percent, at 28,048.94, after having jumped as much as 2.3 percent earlier in the day. For the week, the Nikkei fell 2.5 percent on concerns about slowing growth and inflation.

The broader Topix surged up 22.13 points, or 1.2 percent, to 1,961.85, closing higher for the first time in 10 sessions.

A weaker yen helped lift automakers, with Honda Motor rising 1.1 percent and Toyota Motor rallying 2.9 percent. Yaskawa Electric gained 0.8 percent before its earnings release.

In economic news, data on current account balance and household spending painted a mixed picture of the economy.

Australian markets rose notably as higher commodity prices lifted mining stocks. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index advanced 63.40 points, or 0.9 percent, to 7,320.10, while the broader All Ordinaries Index ended up 66.10 points, or 0.9 percent, at 7,617.30.

BHP, Fortescue Metals Group, OZ Minerals and Rio Tinto climbed 2-4 percent. Energy and tech stocks also finished broadly higher.

Meanwhile, Seoul stocks edged lower as the possible collapse of one of China's biggest borrowers triggered worries about contagion risks to the property sector in the world's second-largest economy. The Kospi slipped 3.16 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,956.30. SK Hynix dropped 1.8 percent on concerns over a slowdown in the memory market.

New Zealand shares also fell slightly, with the benchmark NZX-50 Index closing down 18.01 points, or 0.1 percent, at 13,086.60.

U.S. stocks rose overnight as data showed a bigger-than-expected drop in new jobless claims last week and lawmakers reached an agreement to temporarily extend the debt limit through early December, avoiding a potential default.

The Dow rallied 1 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite climbed 1.1 percent and the S&P 500 added 0.8 percent.

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