Gains of around 1% seen around region; SoftBank up 3% as Saudi fears ease
Asian stock markets were sharply higher Wednesday, with all major indexes logging gains of at least 1%, as global equities continue to cut into last week’s slump.
Japan’s Nikkei NIK, +1.29% rose nearly 1.3%, with tech stocks leading the way. Sharp 6753, +3.37% gained 3.3%, while Sony 6758, +2.23% rose 2.2% and Panasonic 6752, +1.26% was up 1.3%. SoftBank shares 9984, +2.13% rose 3% after Chief Operating Officer Marcelo Claure said Tuesday it was “business as usual” following concerns about the company’s ties to Saudi Arabia in the wake of the disappearance, and believed murder of U.S.-based Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, which triggered a selloff Monday. SoftBank is “anxiously looking at what is happening” with the situation, he said, according to Reuters.
After fresh multiyear lows yesterday and smaller-cap stocks logging declines of more than 2%, Chinese equities joined others in the region with gains of nearly 1%. The Shanghai Composite SHCOMP, +0.60% was last up about 0.6%, about half its session high, and the Shenzhen Composite 399106, +0.81% was up 0.7%. Markets in Hong Kong were closed for a holiday.
South Korea’s Kospi SEU, +1.04% rose more than 1% behind gains by Samsung 005930, +1.26% which announced it was buying Spanish AI-based network analytics company Zhilabs. Australia’s ASX 200 XJO, +1.18% was lifted by the energy and financial sectors, while New Zealand’s NZX-50 NZ50GR, +1.23% rose 1.2%.
Following another 20-month closing low Tuesday, Singapore’s stock benchmark STI, +1.21% jumped 1.2%, with all 30 components higher. Bank stocks have gained some 2% as the index looks to rise for just the third day this month. Malaysia’s stock index FBMKLCI, +0.22% rose modestly, as did Taiwan’s Y9999, -0.02% .