S&P 500 record, Japan trade, Tankan

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S&P 500 record, Japan trade, Tankan


Cherry trees in bloom near the Nippon Budokan in Tokyo, Japan, on Sunday, April 7, 2024. 

Bloomberg | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Asia-Pacific markets mostly rose after key U.S. benchmark indexes hit fresh highs overnight as artificial intelligence chip firm Nvidia overtook Microsoft to become the world’s most valuable public company.

Shares of the chipmaker jumped 3.5% overnight on Wall Street and have surged 174% since the beginning of the year.

Investors in Asia assessed Japan’s trade data for May, with exports beating expectations. Exports grew 13.5% year on year compared with a 13% increase expected by economists polled by Reuters. Imports growth of 9.5%, however, missed expectations of a 10.4% increase.

Investors also digested the Reuters Tankan index reading which showed business confidence among large Japanese manufacturers fell to +6 from +9 in May. On the flip side, business confidence among non-manufacturers climbed to +31 from +26 in May.

The Tankan measures business confidence among Japanese corporations, and a positive figure means optimists outnumber pessimists and vice versa.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 climbed 0.59%, while the broad-based Topix rose 0.65%.

Japanese investment holding company SoftBank saw shares climb by more than 3%. The company has a stake in U.S.-listed chip designer Arm, whose architecture is used in chips including those made by Nvidia.

South Korea’s Kospi gained more than 1%, powered by a 1.5% gain in heavyweight Samsung Electronics.

Other South Korean tech stocks also rose, with LG Electronics jumping 4.13%, while SK Hynix climbed more than 3%. The small-cap Kosdaq rose 0.55%.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index climbed 1.6%, while mainland China’s CSI 300 dipped 0.37%

The China Securities Regulatory Commission said it would publish new measures to deepen the reform of Shanghai’s tech-heavy STAR market, according to a Reuters report.

CSRC chairman Wu Qing said the commission will strengthen regulation of high-frequency trading and over-the-counter derivatives.

The Taiwan Weighted Index reached new highs, gaining 1.22% to cross the 23,000 mark as heavyweights Hon Hai Precision Industry (Foxconn) and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp, gained 4% and 2%, respectively.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 slipped marginally.

Overnight in the U.S., the broad market S&P 500 advanced 0.25% to close at a record 5,487.03, while the Nasdaq Composite climbed 0.03%, also closing at a fresh high of 17,862.23. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.15%.

— CNBC’s Samantha Subin and Alex Harring contributed to this report.



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