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Asian shares mixed, but India's Sensex surged on new govt hopes

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Shutterstock photo - - Indian stocks surged on Friday, as anticipation of a new government pushed the Sensex to an all-time high, while Japanese stocks led the rest of Asia lower.

The BSE Sensex 30 jumped as much as 4.4% in early trading, hitting a record 24,956.60.

The index, which has gained 8.2% so far this week, pushed higher on Friday as counting of votes showed that the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, which is perceived to be pro-business, was in the lead in the recently completed election, with the final results out on Friday.

More broadly, the region took a negative lead from the U.S., where stocks on Wall Street slumped for the second consecutive session after data from Europe showed first-quarter economic output rose just half as much as expected.

Japan's Nikkei 225 was down more than 1%, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index was down 0.7% and the Shanghai Composite slipped 0.3%.

Overnight, U.S. stocks fell after disappointing earnings and a mixed bag of data sent investors selling equities and jumping to the sidelines. The Dow 30 fell 1.01%, the S&P 500 index fell 0.94%, while the NASDAQ Composite Composite index fell 0.76%.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia said its manufacturing index ticked down to 15.4 this month from 16.6 in April, better than expectations for a 14.0 reading.

The data came after the U.S. Department of Labor said the number of individuals filing for initial jobless benefits in the week ending May 10 fell by 24,000 to 297,000 from the previous week's revised total of 321,000. Analysts had expected jobless claims to fall by 1,000 to 320,000 last week.

Elsewhere, the New York Fed said its manufacturing index climbed to a two-plus-year high of 19.01 in May from a reading of 1.29 in April, far surpassing market calls for a rise to 5.00 this month.

On the other hand, U.S. industrial production dropped 0.6% last month, confounding expectations for a 0.1% rise, which spooked investors and sent share prices falling.

Separately, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported earlier that the U.S. consumer price index rose to 0.3% in April from 0.2% in March, in line with market expectations.

The U.S. core consumer price index, which excludes food and energy items, rose by 0.2% last month, more than the expected 0.1% uptick, after a 0.2% gain in March.

On Thursday, however, the producer price index came in much better than expected, and the consumer inflation rate's inability to maintain the same pace as its wholesale counterpart softened the dollar somewhat by stoking concerns surrounding the strength of U.S. demand for goods and services.

The U.S. producer price index increased by 0.6% last month, beating forecasts for a 0.2% gain, after rising 0.5% in March.

The core producer price index advanced 0.5% last month, compared to expectations for a 0.2% increase, after rising 0.6% in March.

On Friday, the U.S. is to round up the week with reports on building permits and housing starts, and a preliminary reading on consumer sentiment from the University of Michigan. offers an extensive set of professional tools for the financial markets.

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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.

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