Fundamental Comment

Asian stocks hit 14-week high on trade talks optimism

Asian stocks hit record high on trade talks optimism

Asian shares closed on Monday on the highest level in 14 weeks, with renewed optimism about U.S.-China trade talks, where markets await the first speech from the new European Central Bank President.

The MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan climbed 1.08 percent, to reach its highest level recorded since July 24, and on track for its biggest daily gain since October 11.

China’s CSI 300 index surged 0.65 percent to finish at 3,978.12 points, Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.27 percent at 6,686.87 and Hong Kong Hang Seng index surged 1.65 percent to reach 27,547.

In Japan, the Tokyo Stock Exchange was closed Monday on holiday, where it will resume trading on Tuesday.

The gains were boosted by hopes regarding progress in trade talks between the world's two largest economies, with U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross saying over the weekend that U.S. companies will soon be licensed to sell to Chinese telecommunications company Huawei.

Huawei was among the Chinese companies listed on the U.S. Department of Commerce's ban on national security threats.

Today, all eyes will be on the first official speech from the new ECB president Christine Lagarde, who took office earlier this month, following the departure of Mario Draghi on October 31.

In Europe, the Euro Stoxx 600 index was 0.77 percent up at 402.52. Germany's DAX also rose to 13,069.01 points, after augmenting 0.84 percent.

The British FTSE continued its series of gains on the European stock market today as it ascended 0.44 percent, now settling at 7334.41 points.

On the other hand, precious gold retreated slightly but remained above the psychological of $1,500 an ounce, following last week’s gains after the Fed's decision of cutting interest rates for a third time in a row.

Gold is meanwhile trading around $1,510 an ounce, noting that it locked its third consecutive weekly advance last week.

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