SINGAPORE — Shares in the Asia-Pacific region rose on Friday, with markets enjoying a roller-coaster week as investors assessed inflation and the global economic outlook.
The Nikkei 225 in Japan ended 2.64% higher at 26,427.65, with shares in Japanese conglomerate SoftBank Group gaining more than 12%, despite reporting a record loss at its investment unit Vision Fund on Thursday. The Topix index rose 1.91% to 1,864.20.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index rose 2.68% to end the day at 19,898.77. Mainland China stocks closed higher, with the Shanghai Composite up 0.96% to 3,084.28, while the Shenzhen Component was up 0.585% to 11,159.79.
South Korea’s Kospi was up 2.12% on the day to 2,604.24, while in Australia the S&P/ASX 200 was up 1.93% to 7,075.10.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia Pacific stocks outside of Japan rose 1.95%.
Concerns about inflation and the economic outlook have weighed on global investor sentiment over the past few days, with riskier assets like tech stocks and cryptocurrencies being hit.
JPMorgan Private Bank’s Alex Wolf told CNBC’s Squawk Box Asia on Friday that the company is “fairly cautious” on Asian stocks at the moment.
“You really have nowhere to hide,” said Wolf, head of Asia investment strategy at the firm. He cited concerns such as broader growth risks creating “short-term uncertainties” for Asia, particularly in the region’s emerging markets.
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said Thursday that bringing inflation under control will not be easy and warned he could not promise a so-called soft landing for the economy.
Overnight, Wall Street’s S&P 500 fell 0.13% to 3,930.08 — more than 18% lower than its all-time high. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 103.81 points, or 0.33%, to 31,730.30. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite rose marginally to 11,370.96.
Currencies and Oil
The US Dollar Index, which tracks the dollar against a basket of its peers, came in at 104.529 after rising from below 104.3 recently.
The Japanese yen traded at 128.81 per dollar, stronger from levels above 130 recorded against the greenback earlier this week. The Australian dollar traded at $0.6898 as it continues to fight a recovery after slipping from over $0.70 earlier in the week.
Oil prices were higher in the afternoon of Asian session, with international benchmark Brent crude futures up 0.6% to $108.09 a barrel. US crude oil futures rose 0.4% to $106.55 a barrel.
https://www.cnbc.com/2022/05/13/asia-markets-federal-reserve-jerome-powell-currencies-oil.html Japan’s Nikkei 225 climbs more than 2% as Asian markets rise