Asian markets extend gains after strong data

3 April, 2019 12:00 AM printer

HONG KONG: Asian investors pressed on with their buying spree Tuesday as they took up the baton from a strong Wall Street rally, cheered by healthy economic data, optimism over China-US trade talks and the prospect of no hike in borrowing costs.

A forecast-beating factory report out of Beijing — which spurred buying across the region Monday — was followed by a similarly positive US reading, tempering worries about the outlook for the world’s biggest and most crucial economies, reports AFP.

Traders are now awaiting the start of the next round of top-level trade talks in Washington, with China and the US noting progress in a meeting last week in Beijing.

A series of olive branch measures from the Chinese side has lifted hopes the two will eventually reach a deal to end their tariffs row, which dragged on equities at the end of 2018.

This week also sees the release of US March jobs data, which are closely watched for an idea about the state of the economy, with the Federal Reserve also using the figures to map its path for monetary policy.

The Fed’s recent dovish lean has helped propel a rally across share markets this year, with other central banks also looking to ease up on their tightening moves.

“Having the central banks take a step back, with the Fed saying that they’re going to pause and that they’re going to be patient at least toward the end of this year, I think that gives the market a little bit of time” to wait for economic data to turn around, said Victoria Fernandez, chief market strategist at Crossmark Global Investments in Houston.

“Is this a bottom, is this a trend that we’re starting to see — an upward trend? If so that’s gonna be positive for all of the markets,” she told Bloomberg News.

In early trade Hong Kong edged up 0.3 percent and Shanghai added 0.4 percent while Tokyo finished the morning session 0.3 percent higher.