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Market Update

Asia Ends Higher; Hong Kong, Mumbai Lag

Most Asian markets notched higher Tuesday after upbeat data from the U.S. and the euro-zone spurred investor confidence.

The Shanghai Composite finished up 0.6% while the Nikkei rallied 1.8% supported by a weaker yen, which hovered near the key 100-per-dollar mark.

Australia's S&P/ASX All Ordinaries bounced back from sharp losses in the previous session, ending 2.6% higher after the central bank held interest rates steady at a record low of 2.75%, in line with expectations.

Elsewhere, Hong Kong's Hang Seng slipped 0.7% as investors returning from a three-day long weekend had the first opportunity to react to yesterday's disappointing Chinese manufacturing activity reports.

Mumbai's Sensex also finished lower 0.6% as investors booked profit after a sharp rally yesterday.

Stocks on the Move

Exporters vaulted higher on the back of the weaker yen and as signs of improvement in the U.S. and Europe boosted confidence.

Sharp Corp. was among the top gainers, up more than 10%, Panasonic Corp. bounced around 5% while Mazda Motor Corp. accelerated 4.4%.

Resources stocks also gained ground following an uptick in commodity prices. Kobe Steel gained 3.9%, Inpex Corp. enhanced over 3% while JFE Holdings rose 3.2%.

In Sydney, miners led the field. Fortescue Metals Group bounced nearly 6% while leading miners BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto rose 3.7% and 2.6% respectively.

Energy firms Santos and Woodside Petroleum rallied 4.6% and 3.1% respectively.

In the banking segment, NAB climbed 1% while Westpac Banking rose 1.6%, recovering from yesterday's losses and on the heels of the central bank's interest rate decision.

But Hong Kong listed banks were sharply lower. ICBC tumbled over 3%, China Construction Bank slumped 4% and Agricultural Bank of China retreated 1.6%.

Property developers and metal-linked firms added to the losses. China Resources Land plunged more than 5% while Poly Property Group fell 2.4%.

Aluminum Corp. of China slumped more than 5% while Angang Steel and Jiangxi Copper erased 1.4% each.

In Mumbai, realty and auto stocks were among the top losers even as defensives like consumer durables, healthcare and FMCG firms held up well.

Jindal Steel topped the chart of decliners -- down 4.2%, Hero MotoCorp. backtracked 2.3%, Tata Power gave up 1.9% while ONGC erased 1.8%.

On the upside, BHEL added 2.7%, Gail India climbed 2.6%, Bharti Airtel finished 2.5% higher while ICICI Bank improved 0.9%.