Asia-Pacific markets rise as stocks see continued rebound from omicron fears

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SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific rose in Thursday morning trade, as fears over the omicron Covid variant ease.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan nudged 0.52% higher in early trade while the Topix index gained 0.54%. South Korea’s Kospi climbed 0.54%.

Elsewhere, the S&P/ASX 200 in Australia gained 0.34% in morning trade.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.23% higher.

Investors will watch mainland Chinese markets after the city of Xi’an ordered its 13 million residents to stay at home as it deals with rising Covid cases, according to Reuters.

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Overnight stateside, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 261.19 points to 35,753.89 while the S&P 500 rose 1.02% to 4,696.56. The Nasdaq Composite jumped 1.18% to 15,521.89.

Those gains on Wall Street came after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday granted authorization for Pfizer’s Covid treatment pill, the first oral antiviral drug cleared during the pandemic.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 96.076 after a recent slide from above 96.3.

The Japanese yen traded at 114.11 per dollar after weakening earlier this week from levels below 113.6 against the greenback. The Australian dollar was at $0.7212 after yesterday’s surge from around $0.712.



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