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Asian markets rise as investors wait for US inflation




BEIJING (AP) Asian stock markets followed Wall Street higher on Thursday as investors waited for US inflation data that could influence the Federal Reserve’s decision on when to reverse the economic stimulus.

Shanghai, Hong Kong, Seoul and Sydney have made progress. Tokyo refused.

Wall Street rose for a third day on Wednesday as anxiety over the omicron variant of the coronavirus eased.

Traders were eagerly awaiting Friday’s US consumer inflation report in November on whether the Federal Reserve would feel more pressure to cool prices by canceling stimulus measures that are pushing stock prices up.

Fed officials are meeting next week for the last time in 2021. They said earlier they were ready to act if necessary after inflation hit a 30-year high of 6.2% in October .

Reading inflation on Friday will undoubtedly be a priority for Fed officials, StoneX Financial’s Matt Weller said in a report. The overall figure is expected to “increase even more.

China said on Thursday that inflation in prices paid by factories for components and raw materials eased in November from the previous month’s high in 25 years. This is viewed by traders as a possible guide to US inflation due to China’s role as a global manufacturing center.

The Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.7% to 3,675.04 after producer price inflation eased to 12.9% a year earlier from 13.5% in October due to falling prices for coal and metals. Consumer inflation exceeded 2% for the first time in over a year due to a 1.6% rise in food prices.

The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo lost 0.2% to 28,818.53 while the Hang Seng in Hong Kong was up 1.2% to 24,273.39. Kospi in Seoul gained 0.6% to 3,020.58.

The S & P-ASX added less than 0.1% at 7,412.30. New Zealand declined while Southeast Asian markets advanced.

On Wall Street, the benchmark S&P 500 rose 0.3% to 4,701.21. It is up 25.2% over the year. Some 62% of stocks in the index gained.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.1% to 35,754.75. The Nasdaq composite rose 0.6% to 15,786.99.

Markets have slipped over the previous two weeks amid concerns about inflation and the omicron variant. Shares stabilized after White House chief medical adviser Dr Anthony Fauci on Monday said early signs suggest it may be less dangerous than the previous delta variant.

Airlines and cruise lines have gained in sign that investors think travel restrictions are less likely.

Norwegian Cruise Line jumped 8.2% for the S&P 500’s biggest gain. United Airlines was up 4.2%.

Apple rose 2.3% while other big tech companies fell. Chipmaker Nvidia fell 1.9% and rival Intel closed 1.6% lower.

In energy markets, benchmark US crude rose 77 cents to $ 73.13 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose 31 cents on Wednesday to $ 72.36. Brent crude, the basis of international oil prices, gained 70 cents to $ 76.52 a barrel in London. It rose 38 cents to $ 75.82 the previous session.

The dollar rose to 113.75 yen from 113.67 yen on Wednesday. The euro fell to $ 1.1132 from $ 1.1349.




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