HONG KONG (AFP) – Asian markets were mixed Tuesday after US shares tapped fresh records for a fourth straight session, while a weaker yen helped Japan’s Nikkei extend its recent rally to hit a seven-year high.
Tokyo rose 2.05 per cent, or 343.58 points, to 17,124.11 – its best finish since October 2007 – while Seoul added 0.24 per cent, or 4.77 points, to 1,936.00 and Hong Kong ended 0.27 per cent, or 63.58 points, higher at 23,808.28.
However, Sydney drifted 0.12 per cent, or 6.9 points, to 5,517.1 and Shanghai ended 0.16 per cent, or 4.00 points, off at 2,469.67.
Wall Street continued its impressive run Monday, adding to Friday’s gains after data showed jobs creation was healthy in October and the unemployment rate hit a six-year low.
The Dow rose 0.23 per cent and the S&P 500 added 0.31 per cent, both hitting records for a fourth successive session, while the Nasdaq was up 0.41 per cent.
In Tokyo the Nikkei resumed its uptrend as the yen dipped against the dollar, with analysts forecasting the index will march on through the rest of the year after the Bank of Japan’s stimulus injection last month.
The dollar was at 115.60 yen, compared with 114.83 yen in New York and sharply up from 114.16 yen in Tokyo earlier Monday.
The euro bought $1.2407 compared with $1.2420, while it was also at 143.58 yen against 142.62 yen.
Also providing support to Tokyo stocks is Japan’s $1.26-trillion public pension fund which said last month it would double the amount of equities in its investment portfolio.
On oil markets US benchmark West Texas Intermediate (WTI) for December delivery fell 27 cents to $77.13 while Brent crude for December eased 34 cents to $82.00 in afternoon trade.
WTI tumbled $1.25 and Brent lost $1.05 on Monday after Kuwait said OPEC is unlikely to cut output when it meets in Vienna on November 27.
Gold was at $1,150.00 an ounce, compared with $1,171.30 late Monday.