Asian Shares Follow Wall Street Higher

Asian stocks rose sharply on Thursday as a hawkish interest-rate hold by the Federal Reserve fueled hopes that the U.S. central bank is done with rate hikes.

The Fed acknowledged the U.S. economy‘s surprising strength, but also nodded to the tighter financial conditions faced by businesses and households – alleviating the need for a further rate hike.

The dollar tracked Treasury yields lower, helping gold prices push higher. Oil rebounded from a one-month low on apprehensions the Middle East conflict may spread.

China’s Shanghai Composite index was marginally higher while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index jumped 1.6 percent, led by technology stocks.

Japan’s Nikkei average was up 1.2 percent. Japan’s Vice Finance Minister for International Affairs Masato Kanda expressed concern over “one-sided, sharp” yen movements after the currency dropped to a one-year low against the dollar.

South Korea’s Kospi average was up more than 2 percent despite inflation accelerating in October.

Australia’s benchmark S&P ASX 200 gained 1.2 percent after data showed the country’s September goods trade surplus narrowed to its lowest in 32 months.

Across the Tasman, New Zealand’s benchmark S&P NZX-50 index was up 1.5 percent.
U.S. stocks rallied overnight as comments from Fed Chair Jerome Powell suggested that rate hikes were done.

Weaker than expected ADP employment and manufacturing data also eased concerns about the outlook for interest rates.

The Dow rose 0.7 percent to close higher for the third consecutive session as the Fed skipped a rate hike for the third time this year.

The S&P 500 rallied 1.1 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite jumped 1.6 percent.

European stocks extended gains for a third day running on Wednesday after data showed euro zone inflation fell to a two-year low of 2.9 percent in October and the euro area economy shrank slightly in the third quarter.

The pan European STOXX 600 advanced 0.7 percent. The German DAX gained 0.8 percent, France’s CAC 40 inched up 0.7 percent and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 edged up 0.3 percent.

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