Most Asia Pacific shares pared early losses on Thursday, after the US Federal Reserve reaffirmed its dedication to bring down inflation.
In Hong Kong, the benchmark Hang Seng
(HSI) The index traded 1.5% higher, leading gainers in the region. One of the top gainers was internet giant Tencent, which was more than 7% higher after posting a strong rise in its online advertising business in the December quarter on Wednesday.
In Japan, the Nikkei 225
(N225) was flat after opening lower. The broader Topix index was 0.3% lower, reversing some of its early morning losses.
South Korea’s Kospi was 0.2% higher, while Australia’s S&P ASX 200 advanced by half a percentage point.
Asian shares had opened broadly lower, tracking losses on Wall Street. In the US, the Dow closed 1.6% lower, while the S&P 500
(DVS) slipped about 1.7%. The Nasdaq Composite declined 1.6%.
“Looking ahead, while we see fundamental value in Asia-ex Japan stocks … we remain concerned about a possible pullback in US stocks assuming US data deteriorates in the months ahead,” Nomura analysts wrote in a Thursday research note.
US markets had been fickle on Wednesday before settling in the red as investors digested the Federal Reserve’s quarter-point rate hike and looked for clues about the state of the banking sector meltdown.
The Fed raised rates by a quarter point at the conclusion of its two-day meeting, even though its historic rate hiking campaign was a contributing factor in the banking crisis.
Investors were heartened by the central bank’s strong hints that its aggressive pace of interest rate hikes would come to an end soon. Still, the central bank also warned that rate cuts aren’t coming this year.
– News84Media’s Krystal Hur and Laura He contributed reporting