Japanese company Canon Inc. reported a boost in second-quarter profits to $778 million. Also, the profits of Chinese industrial firms jumped 71.8% y/y for the first half of 2010. Both earnings reports boosted investor confidence.
While most Asian markets posted gains on Wednesday, India’s SENSEX 30 fell. Investors responded to the Reserve Bank of India’s increase of the repurchase rate and the reverse repurchase rate. (See RGE Critical Issue: India Hikes Policy Rates in July: Enough to Stay on the Curve?).
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index (up 0.08%) and the MSCI Asia Apex 50 (up 0.15%) advanced on Wednesday.
In Japan, the NIKKEI 225 jumped 2.7% to close at 9753.27. All sectors gained on the day led by technology (up 4.49%) and financials (up 4.11%).
The Hang Seng Index gained 0.56%. While industrials (down 0.22%) and basic materials (down 1.03%) experienced losses, all other sectors advanced. Technology was the best performing sector as it rose 2.18%.
The Shanghai Composite climbed 2.26% or 58.29 points to close at 2633.66. According to a Bloomberg report, the head of the Chinese central bank’s survey and statistics department stated that China will continue to employ loose monetary policy for the remainder of 2010. The easy monetary policy has been used to encourage domestic demand. By increasing domestic consumption, China is attempting to offset the falling export demand associated with slower global growth. The People’s Bank of China also stated that the risk of a double dip recession was low.
India’s BSE SENSEX 30 slid 0.67%. Only the health care (up 1.46%) and technology (up 0.15%) sectors posted gains. During his visit to India, U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron gave a speech imploring India to reduce trade barriers. Cameron is visiting Bangalore with a delegation comprising members of cabinet and key business leaders. With turmoil stemming from the European debt crisis and the budget deficit, Cameron is directing his efforts toward stimulating trade and investment.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.72%. Only the technology and telecommunications sectors experienced losses; these sectors were down 0.40% and 0.71% respectively. Australia’s consumer price index increased 0.6% in the second quarter and has risen 3.1% for the entirety of 2010. Because the inflation numbers were below expectations, it has become less likely that the central bank will need to increase interest rates.
South Korea’s KRX 100 gained 0.36% or 13.52 points to close at 3736.93.
On currencies, the renminbi (down 0.01%) and the rupee (down 0.06%) lost against the dollar. The yen, Australian dollar and kiwi gained against the dollar.
The yields on 10-year sovereign bonds decreased in Australia, New Zealand and Malaysia. On the other hand, yields increased in China, Hong Kong and India.
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