Picture used for illustrative purpose. File
Asian stock markets were mostly higher Tuesday after Wall Street rose on a flurry of corporate deals and China's economic activity improved. Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seoul gained, while Tokyo retreated.
Wall Street's S&P 500 index closed 1.3% higher, driven by gains for technology, health care and finance stocks after chipmaker Nvidia and other companies announced acquisitions and drugmaker AstraZeneca said clinical trials of its coronavirus vaccine will resume.
"Wall St. appears to have recovered some of its mojo,” Mizuho Bank said in a report. "The question to ask, though, is whether we are dealing with optimism or there is just optimism about deals."
The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.3% to 3,289.38 after the government reported retail sales rose 0.5% in August over a year earlier for their first positive growth this year. The Chinese statistics agency said that was a sign of "stable and continuous” recovery from the economy's downturn.
The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo lost 0.4% to 23,464.99 while the Hang Seng in Hong Kong added 0.5% to 24,750.45. The S&P-ASX 200 in Sydney was down less than 0.1% at 5,894.50.
India's Sensex opened up 0.1% at 38,800.66. New Zealand, Singapore and Bangkok gained while Jakarta retreated.
On Wall Street, tech stocks gained after Nvidia agreed to buy Softbank's stake in chipmaker Arm for $40 billion.
Oracle climbed 4.3% after the software maker beat out Microsoft to become the "trusted technology provider” of Chinese-owned video app TikTok. The agreement still requires approval from the Trump administration, which deemed TikTok a security risk and demanded its sale to a US owner.
The S&P 500 gained to 3,383.54. That reversed part of the index’s 2.5% slide last week, its biggest weekly decline since June.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.2% to 27,993.33. The Nasdaq, which includes many tech stocks, picked up 1.9% to 11,056.65.
This week's strong start is a reversal after a slide in high-flying tech stocks that many analysts said was overdue.
AstraZeneca added 0.5% following the weekend announcement that clinical trials for its coronavirus vaccine will resume after a reported side-effect in a British patient. The vaccine is seen as one of the strongest contenders among the dozens of vaccines being tested.
Markets rose last week after unexpectedly strong U.S. jobs data despite some American states reporting record new coronavirus infections.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 1.3% and further away from a four-month top hit last week. Japan's Nikkei shed 2.2% and Chinese blue chips 0.9%.
All major Asian indexes were upbeat with Japan's Nikkei rising 0.1%, China's blue-chip index adding 1.7% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index climbed 1.8%.
Asian shares posted gains on Monday and the euro rose to four-month highs, as EU leaders appeared to make some headway after three days of haggling on a plan to revive their economies, even as coronavirus cases increased in many countries.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index was flat, while travel and leisure stocks shed the most among sectors with a 2.4% fall.
The dollar gave up gains made after the Federal Reserve upgraded its 2020 economic forecast this week to trade in negative territory on Thursday. It was last quoted at 92.923 against a basket of major currencies, on track for a 0.3% weekly loss.
Retail sales volumes rose by 0.8% in August, the Office for National Statistics said - slightly above the average 0.7% forecast in a Reuters poll - and, compared with a year earlier, they were up 2.8%, just below forecasts of 3.0% annual growth.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index added 0.18 per cent, or 40.93 points, to close at 23,360.30 for a weekly loss of 0.20 per cent. The broader Topix index finished 0.49 per cent, or 8.02 points, higher at 1,646.42 for a weekly gain of 0.60 per cent.