Fundamental Comment

Asian shares rise as strong earnings boost confidence


Most Asian shares ended higher on Wednesday, trailing gains in Wall Street overnight as strong quarterly corporate earnings boosted investors’ confidence.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 index augmented 1.42 percent to close at 22,158.20, as the yen, a favorite safe haven, slipped to $107.29.

In China, the Shanghai Composite Index ended 0.80 percent up to 3,091.40, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index added 0.66 percent to 30,261.18.

South Korea’s Kospi index edged up 1.07 percent to 2,479.98, and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 surged 0.34 percent to end at 5,861.40.

IMF left its global growth forecasts for 2018 and 2019 unchanged on Tuesday, yet said medium-term risks were to the downside.

On Wall Street, Dow Jones closed Tuesday up 0.88 percent, while the S&P 500 soared 1.06 percent and the Nasdaq 1.78 percent.

Technology stocks led by Netflix, Amazon and Twitter gave a boost to U.S. equities, where Netflix climbed more than 9 percent after reporting robust earnings.

Eyes will focus on the release of important inflation data from Europe, as U.K. and euro area release their March CPI figures.

Later in the day, the Bank of Canada will announce its interest rate decision, where analysts predict the borrowing cost to remain at 1.25 percent.

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the green currency’s movements versus a basket of major currencies, traded higher at 89.28.

Crude oil rose for a second straight session to $67.04 a barrel, rebounding from a bottom of $65.55 the previous session, ahead of U.S. government report showing crude build last week.

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