Stocks in Asia-Pacific Saw Gains on the Day

Stocks in Asia-Pacific once more demonstrated their strength on Monday, with shares in Japan and China seeing big gains.

The Nikkei 225 was among the biggest gainers in Asia-Pacific, rising 1.83% to end its trading day at 29,659.89. That result added to its surge of 2.05% several days ago after Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said he will not be taking part in the upcoming leadership election. The Topix also rose on Monday. It gained 1.24%.

The country’s leader stated that he decided to focus on coronavirus measures. He faced criticism over a coronavirus response seen as too slow and small. Suga was also criticized for holding the Olympics despite the public’s health concerns.

But Suga believes that he invested all his energy into important policies including the virus response since he took office. In 2020, he replaced Sinzo Abe who resigned due to health problems.

Stocks across the world

Mainland Chinese stocks also rose on Monday, with the Shanghai composite gaining 1.12% to 3,621.86. The Shenzhen component advanced 2.586% to close at 14,546.60. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index rose about 0.9% as of its final hour of trading.

South Korea’s Kospi closed fractionally higher at 3,203.33. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 closed about 0.1% higher at 7,528.50.

U.S. stocks declined on Friday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 159.42 points, or 0.6% to 28,133.31. The S&P 500 fell 0.8% to 3,426.96 but closed well off its session low. It was down 3.1% at its session low and for a short period of time traded positive on the day. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.3% to close at 11,313.13 but also closed well above its low of the day.

Shares of Boeing gained more than 1% while bank stocks gained broadly. Citigroup as well as JPMorgan Chase rose 2% and 2.2% respectively. Wells Fargo added 1.1% and Bank of America jumped 3.4%.

On Monday, U.S. markets were closed for the Labor Day holiday.

Last week, U.S. jobs data released by the Labor Department came in far short of expectations. The country’s economy added 235,000 positions in August. Hopefully, the unemployment rate fell to 5.2% from 5.4%, in line with estimates.

The jobs data comes with heightened fears of the Covid-19 pandemic. Another issue is that Covid-19 cases could slow down the economic recovery. The latest report could cloud policy for the Federal Reserve.

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