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Markets

Asia follows U.S. higher; Nikkei up 1.65%

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Investing.com - Asian stocks surged Wednesday despite a stronger yen as traders took their cues from Tuesday's U.S. session that saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average soar to a new all-time high.

In Asian trading Wednesday, Japan's Nikkei 225 jumped 1.65%, running to its highest levels since September 2008, just before the darkest days of the global financial crisis. The Dow Jones Industrial Average has now erased all of its financial crisis-induced losses.

The Nikkei rose despite a slightly stronger yen, lead by exporters such as Toyota. Electronics maker Sharp soared on reports South Korean rival Samsung may make an investment in the Japanese firm.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng advanced 0.87% while the Shanghai Composite added 0.35%. Conservative sectors such as telecommunications and utilities lead Chinese shares higher as banks and brokerages slid.

Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index added 1% after Australia's Bureau of Statistics said the country's fourth-quarter GDP rose by 0.6%, matching analysts' expectations. The third-quarter GDP reading was also revised higher to show growth of 0.7%.

Exports, helped by a rebound in China's economy, and infrastructure spending buoyed Australian growth in the fourth quarter. Exports rose 3.3% in the fourth quarter while household spending increased 0.2%. Australia, the world's 12th-largest economy, has been free of recession for over two decades.

Australian stocks are poised for their best close since August 2008. The good news out of Australia helped New Zealand's NZSE 50 rise 0.66%. Health care issues helped lead New Zealand stocks higher, but financials were a drag there as well.

South Korea's Kospi added 0.39%, helped in part by the Samsung/Sharp speculation. The won traded higher against the dollar.

Singapore's Straits Times Index added 0.90% percent rebounding from Tuesday's loss of the same amount. S&P 500 futures are off 0.08% at this wr

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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