(RTTNews) – Asian stock markets traded mostly higher on Friday, extending the gains from the previous session, following positive overnight signals from Wall Street. Investors are also cautiously optimistic after reports of encouraging inflation data and a slight drop in jobless claims from Asian US markets ended largely up on Thursday.
Meanwhile, traders also remain cautious amid restrictions and blockages in several areas of the region as coronavirus cases are still high.
The Australian stock market is slightly higher after recovering from initial losses on Friday, extending modest gains from previous sessions, with the benchmark S & P / ASX 200 above the 7,300 level near all-time highs, following the positive signals from Wall Street overnight. Weakness in energy and financial stocks was offset by strength in gold companies and technology stocks.
Traders were also relieved after no new cases of the coronavirus were reported in the country’s second most populous state, Victoria, on a day the Melbourne area emerged from lockdown.
The benchmark S & P / ASX 200 is up 16.90 points or 0.23% to 7,319.40, after hitting a high of 7,320.00 and a low of 7,274.80 earlier. The larger All Ordinaries index was up 25.20 points or 0.33% to 7,584.00. Australian markets ended slightly higher on Thursday.
The main minors are mixed. BHP Group, Fortescue Metals and OZ Minerals are up 0.2% each, while Rio Tinto is down 0.5%. Mineral resources are flat.
Among oil stocks, Oil Search, Woodside Petroleum and Origin Energy fell 0.5% each, while Santos and Beach energy lost nearly 1% each.
Among tech stocks, Afterpay and Xero each gain more than 2%, while WiseTech Global adds almost 1% and Appen is up almost 4%.
Among the Big Four, National Australia Bank and Commonwealth Bank lose almost 1% each, while Westpac and ANZ Banking lose more than 1% each. Gold miners higher after gold prices surge overnight Evolution Mining gains more than 2 percent, while Resolute Mining, Northern Star Resources and Gold Road Resources add more than 3 percent each . Newcrest Mining is up over 1%. In other news, Victoria extended her royal commission on casino giant Crown Resorts by 10 weeks and doubled her budget so that evidence of potential wrongdoing can be properly investigated. He was originally scheduled to report on August 1. The stock is down 3%.
Avita shares climbed nearly 17% after the U.S. FDA gave the green light to biotechnology’s flagship Recell skin system for more severe burns and for pediatric patients.
In the currency market, the Australian dollar is trading at $ 0.775 on Friday.
The Japanese stock market is slightly lower in choppy trading on Friday, after modest gains in previous sessions, with the Nikkei 225 benchmark just below the 29,000 mark, ignoring positive signals from Wall Street overnight . Meanwhile, concerns about the prolonged state of emergency for COVID-19 in several major areas are hanging over the market.
However, the Japanese government has now decided to lift the state of emergency in the Olympic city of Tokyo and downgrade it to a state of near emergency in other prefectures after this weekend as infections steadily decline and that the pressure on hospitals is easing.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 closed the morning session at 28,923.30, down 35.26 points or 0.12%, after hitting a low of 29,080.89 and a low of 28,839 , 54 earlier. Japanese stocks closed slightly higher on Thursday.
Market heavyweight SoftBank Group and operator Uniqlo Fast Retailing each grew 0.4%. Among automakers, Honda is losing more than 1 percent and Toyota is down 0.3 percent, while Mazda is up 0.4 percent.
In the tech space, Advantest is gaining nearly 2%, while Screen Holdings and Tokyo Electron add nearly 1% each. In the banking sector, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial lost almost 2%, while Sumitomo Mitsui Financial and Mizuho Financial fell by more than 1% each. Among the major exporters, Mitsubishi Electric is gaining more than 1% and Sony is adding almost 1%, while Panasonic is losing more than 1% and Canon is down almost 2%.
Among the other big winners, Eisai earns more than 7%, while Daiichi Sankyo. Bandai Namco Holdings, M3 and Japan Post Holdings add nearly 3% each. Chugai Pharmaceutical, Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha and Fujitsu are up more than 2%, while Kyocera, DeNA, Astellas Pharma, Chubu Electric Power, CyberAgent and Nippon Yusen KK are up almost 2% each.
Conversely, Kubota is losing more than 4% and Isuzu Motors is down almost 4%, while Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Konica Minolta are down more than 3%. T&D Holdings, Mitsubishi Motors, Marui Group, Tosoh, GS Yuasa and Marui Group are all down nearly 3% each. In the currency market, the US dollar is trading in the lower range of 109 yen on Friday.
Elsewhere in Asia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan are all 0.1-0.5% higher each, while Indonesia, Shanghai and Malaysia are 0. 2 to 0.4% each.
On Wall Street, stocks fluctuated during Thursday’s trading session, but largely maintained a positive bias the day before the largely up close. With the bullish movement, the S&P 500 hit a new closing high.
The major averages all closed in positive territory, although the Dow Jones rose only 19.10 points or 0.1% to 34,466.24. The tech-rich Nasdaq rose 108.58 points or 0.8% to 14,020.33 and the S&P 500 rose 19.63 points or 0.5% to 4,239.18.
Meanwhile, major European markets recorded a mixed performance that day. While the UK FTSE 100 index rose 0.1%, the German DAX index edged down 0.1% and the French CAC 40 index fell 0.3%.
Crude oil futures rose on Thursday amid optimism, demand for energy will pick up gradually following a report from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) which showed a sharp drop in stocks of American crude last week. West Texas Intermediate crude oil futures for July ended $ 0.33 or 0.5% at $ 70.29 a barrel.
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