Asia-Pacific stocks rise; China real estate shares in Hong Kong drop


SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific rose in Friday trade following heavy losses for some regional markets in the previous trading day, as investors continue to assess the impact of a potentially faster-than-expected policy tightening by the U.S. Federal Reserve.

The Nikkei 225 rose 0.55%, recovering partially from its nearly 3% drop on Thursday. The Topix index advanced 0.37%.

Mainland Chinese stocks traded in positive territory as the Shanghai composite climbed about 0.2% while the Shenzhen component edged 0.334% higher. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index jumped 0.76%.

South Korea’s Kospi gained 1.12%. Shares in Australia were up in morning trade, with the S&P/ASX 200 rising 1.54%.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.67% higher.

Markets were spooked earlier in the week and fell sharply after minutes from the Fed’s December meeting showed officials at the central bank ready to aggressively dial back policy help.

The yield on the benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury note rose as high as 1.75% on Thursday, last sitting at 1.7158% — still much higher after ending 2021 at 1.51%. Yields move inversely to prices.

China real estate shares drop

Hong Kong-listed shares of Chinese real estate firms fell in Friday trade after Reuters reported that developer Shimao Group defaulted on a trust loan, renewing concerns over the sector.

Shimao shares in Hong Kong plunged 16.1% while China Evergrande Group fell 2.42% and Sunac dropped 5.05%. The Hang Seng Properties index traded 0.98% lower.

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Overnight on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 170.64 points to 36,236.47 while the S&P 500 shed about 0.1% to 4,696.05. The Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.13% to about 15,080.87.

Currencies and oil

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 96.22 — holding above levels below 96 seen earlier this week.

The Japanese yen traded at 115.93 per dollar, stronger than levels above 116 against the greenback seen yesterday. The Australian dollar was at $0.7176 after yesterday’s drop from above $0.72.

Oil prices were higher in the morning of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures up 0.6% to $82.48 per barrel. U.S. crude futures gained 0.64% to $79.97 per barrel.

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