Shares in Asia-Pacific increased in Thursday trade as anxieties over the omicron variant were relieved.
Hong Kong-listed shares of JD.com (Chinese e-commerce giant) fell 7.08%, while Tencent rose 4.03%.
Those moves came after Tencent announced it would spread the majority of its shares in JD.com to its shareholders. That resulted in reducing its stake in the e-commerce company from approximately 18% to around 2.4%.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index got earlier gains, increasing by 0.17%.
Mainland Chinese stocks stood higher, with the Shanghai composite rising 0.14% while the Shenzhen component rose 0.257%. Investors are still monitoring Covid expansions in the country after the central Chinese city of Xi’an entered a lockdown today as authorities sought to control a spread of Covid cases.
The Nikkei 225 in Japan rose 0.48% higher while the Topix index gained 0.7%. South Korea’s Kospi increased 0.24%.
The S&P/ASX 200 in Australia gained 0.23%.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares traded 0.54% higher outside Japan.
Overnight stateside, the S&P 500 increased 1.03% to 4,696.57. The Nasdaq Composite bounced 1.19% to 15,521.88.
Those gains on Wall Street resulted from the event on Wednesday when Pfizer’s Covid treatment pill received authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It will be the first oral antiviral drug used during the Covid pandemic.
The U.S. dollar index was 96.046 after a recent slide above 96.4.
The Japanese yen traded at 114.13 per dollar after decreasing earlier this week from levels below 113.7 against the greenback. The Australian dollar was $0.7207 after yesterday’s rise from about $0.713.
Oil prices appeared higher in the afternoon of Asia trading hours. The international benchmark Brent crude futures were going up 0.24% to $75.47 per barrel, while the U.S. crude futures increased 0.27% to $72.96 per barrel.
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