02.02.2023 02:33 PM
Asian markets extend uptrend on Thursday amid increased optimism

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Asian stock indexes continued to advance on Thursday. In China, the Shanghai Composite and Shenzhen Composite gained 0.06% and 0.41%, respectively, while the Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong rose by 0.03%. The S&P/ASX 200 and the Nikkei 225 went up by 0.13% and 0.27%, respectively. The KOSPI was the best performing index and increased by 0.95%.

Asian indexes followed the US market, where indexes gained 2% after the Fed hiked the interest rate by 0,25% up to 4,5-4,75%. This decision was made unanimously and matched forecasts, and markets expected it as well.

According to Fed Chairman Powell, there was a real opportunity to bring inflation back to 2% without raising the unemployment rate significantly and slowing down economic growth. At the same time, he said interest rates should continue to rise in order to limit CPI growth.

Meanwhile in South Korea, consumer prices increased by 5.2% in January 2023 from 5% in December, according to the latest data. Inflation hit the highest level in three months. It also exceeded analysts' forecasts of a 4.95% increase. Month-on-month, inflation rose by 0.8%, compared to December's 0.2% increase.

The KOSPI went up as a number of stocks increased, such as Samsung Electronics, which rose by 2.8%, and Hyundai Motor, which added 0.2%.

The Nikkei 225 was boosted by M3, Inc. which added 4.3%, Hitachi, Ltd. which gained 4.2%, as well as SCREEN Holdings, Co. Ltd., which went up by 3.8%.

Baidu advanced by 7.1% thanks to the report by US-based BlackRock, Inc. that it had increased its stake in the company from 5.4% to 6.6% at the end of 2023.

Sunny Optical Technology Group increased by 4.4%, China Unicom (Hong Kong) gained 3.8% and Xiaomi rose by 3.3%. Shares of Netease, Inc. and JD.com, Inc. gained 0.7% and 0.9%, respectively.

The S&P/ASX 200 was boosted by shares of Megaport, Ltd., which gained 11.1%. At the same time, shares of Rio Tinto lost 2.3% while BHP dropped by 1.4%.

Anastasia Kravtsova,
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