ASIAN EQUITIES, COMMODITIES GAIN ON ECONOMIC RECOVERY TRADE

ASIAN EQUITIES, COMMODITIES GAIN ON ECONOMIC RECOVERY TRADE

Asian stocks rose on Wednesday, tracking modest Wall Street gains, as expectations that a vaccine will eventually win the battle against the coronavirus fuelled recovery hopes, while tight supply expectations pushed oil prices to a one-year high.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.61%, while Japan’s NIKKEI 225 rose 1.12%.

Chinese shares rose 0.07% while South Korea’s KOSPI gained 1.05%. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200  reversed losses and added 0.18%.

U.S. stock futures edged up by 0.18%.

Treasuries extended their rally, pulling benchmark 10-year yields further away from the highest in almost a year and causing the yield curve to flatten slightly.

Oil prices were also supported after Saudi Arabia said it plans to cut output by an extra 1 million barrels per day in February and March.

Some investors were monitoring developments in Washington after at least three Republicans said they would join Democrats in a vote expected on Wednesday to impeach President Donald Trump over the recent turmoil in the U.S. Capitol.

With seven days remaining in his term in office, Trump faces impeachment over accusations that he incited insurrection in a speech to his followers last week before hundreds of them stormed the Capitol, leaving five dead. Trump says his speech was appropriate.

An impeachment trial could proceed even after Trump leaves office on Jan. 20, but analysts say they don’t expect any further political turmoil in Washington to affect markets.

Mainland Chinese stocks were down by the early morning. The Shanghai Composite was down by 0.86 % to 3,576.31. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was down  about 0.28% to 28201.25.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei average. Nikkei 225 is trading up 1.09 percent at 28473.03 on Wednesday, while the broader TOPIX  100 rose  0.14 percent to 1,213.93. South Korea’s Kospi was up by 0.65% to 3146.32.

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