Asian stocks rose Wednesday to build on another strong performance in New York following more healthy earnings from big-name firms while hopes for a slowdown in Federal Reserve rate hikes spread cheer.
Hong Kong and Shanghai were among the best performers after China’s central bank and forex officials pledged support for the country’s equities, bonds and yuan, helping investors bounce back from Monday’s rout, reports BSS.
The mood across trading floors has been generally positive this week after a report Friday suggested the Fed could begin discussing applying the brakes on its monetary tightening campaign aimed at fighting decades-high inflation.
That came as some bank officials hinted they could be open to the prospect of hiking by less than the 75 basis points seen after the past three meetings. And while a similar move is expected next month, there are flickers of hope that the pace could slow in December or next year.
Adding to that optimism was data indicating the higher borrowing costs were having an impact on the world’s biggest economy, with house prices falling, consumer confidence at a three-month low and weakness in the factory sector.
“A few economic reports all told a similar story… that the economy is weakening,” said OANDA’s Edward Moya. “A weakening economy will bring down inflation and that is good news for long-term investors looking to get back into equities.”
All three main indexes on Wall Street rallied, with the Nasdaq up more than two percent, helped by a drop in Treasury yields.
Investors also welcomed another round of better-than-expected profits, this time from Coca-Cola and General Motors. However, after-hours big misses from Microsoft, Texas Instruments and Google parent Alphabet soured the mood a little among tech investors.
Still, Asian markets were well up, led by Hong Kong’s jump of more than two percent while Shanghai climbed one percent.