Asian Shares Rise As China Relaxes Foreign Investment Rules

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(RTTNews.com) - Asian stocks reversed early losses to end mostly higher on Friday after China eased restrictions on foreign investment in sectors including banking, automotive, heavy industry and agriculture amid scrutiny from its top trading partners, the United States and the European Union.

They were complaining that Beijing limits foreign firms' ability to enter the world's second-largest economy.

China's Shanghai Composite index rallied 60.52 points or 2.17 percent to finish at 2,847.42, the largest single-day gain since August 2016, as authorities eased foreign investment curbs.

Speculation was also rife that the People's Bank of China will lower the reserve ratios for some banks next week. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index climbed 457.79 points or 1.61 percent to 28,955.

Japanese shares rebounded from early losses to finish modestly higher as the yen fell out of favor and EU leaders reached a deal on migration after more than 12 hours of negotiations.

The Nikkei average inched up 34.12 points or 0.15 percent to 22,304.51 while the broader Topix index closed 0.23 percent higher at 1,730.89.

Air-conditioner maker Fujitsu General jumped 3.7 percent after rainy season ended in Kanto-Koshin region 22 days earlier than average.

Sharp Corp soared 15.2 percent after the company cancelled plans to raise as much as 200 billion yen in a public share sale, citing a volatile share market due to U.S.-China trade tensions.

In economic news, Japan's unemployment rate decreased in May to the lowest level in nearly twenty six years, a government report showed. The seasonally adjusted jobless rate dropped to 2.2 percent from 2.5 percent in April.

Industrial production dropped a seasonally adjusted 0.2 percent month-over-month in May, reversing a 0.5 percent increase in April, another report showed. It was the first decline in four months.

Australian shares fell modestly, dragged down by healthcare and energy stocks. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index dropped 20.80 points or 0.33 percent to 6,194.60 while the broader All Ordinaries index ended down 16.10 points or 0.26 percent at 6,289.70.

Healthcare stocks extended recent losses, with CSL and Sonic Healthcare ending down 1.1 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively. Energy stocks fell modestly on profit taking as oil prices dipped on concerns about trade frictions between the United States and other major economies.

Banks also closed mostly lower, with ANZ falling as much as 1.5 percent. Investment bank Macquarie Group lost 2.4 percent after hitting a record high in the previous session. Fortescue Metals Group shed 2.2 percent after Atlas Iron's board unanimously backed Gina Rinehart'sA$390 million takeover bid for the company.

BHP Billiton rose 0.3 percent after it agreed to pay $158 million in remediation and compensation to the Brazilian non-profit foundation it set up in response to the 2015 Samarco mine dam collapse.

Seoul stocks snapped a three-day losing streak as trade worries took a backseat and investors turned their focus to corporate earnings.

The benchmark Kospi edged up 11.89 points or 0.51 percent to 2,326.13, led by builders and technology companies. Both SK Hynix and LG Electronics rallied around 2.6 percent in the technology sector.

Hyundai Construction & Engineering soared 5.1 percent and Daewoo Construction & Engineering climbed 2.6 percent after the two Koreas held working-level talks to discuss plans to connect roads over the border.

On the data front, South Korea's industrial production increased for the second straight month in May, in line with expectations, preliminary data from Statistics South Korea showed.

Industrial production climbed 0.9 percent year-over-year, following a 0.8 percent rise in April. On a monthly basis, industrial production rose 1.1 percent from April, when it expanded by 3.1 percent.

New Zealand shares closed lower, a day after the country's central bank kept interest rates steady and warned of slowing growth. The benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index dropped 55.66 points or 0.62 percent to 8,943.13.

India's Sensex was rallying 1 percent, Indonesia's Jakarta Composite index was climbing 1.2 percent, Malaysia's KLSE Composite index was up 1.4 percent, Singapore's Straits Times index was gaining 0.9 percent and the Taiwan Weighted jumped as much as 1.7 percent.

U.S. stocks rose overnight as banks and technology companies rebounded from recent string of losses. The Dow rose 0.4 percent, the S&P 500 gained 0.6 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite added 0.8 percent.

Traders shrugged off a dismal GDP report, disappointing labor market data and Trump's remarks that the European Union was set up to take advantage of the United States.

Read the original article on RTTNews (http://www.rttnews.com/2909615/asian-shares-rise-as-china-relaxes-foreign-investment-rules.aspx)

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This article appears in: Politics , World Markets , US Markets , Stocks

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