World Economy

Asia Share Markets Mostly Higher

Asia Share Markets Mostly HigherAsia Share Markets Mostly Higher

Asian stocks eked out marginal gains on Monday, as uncertainty over trade relations between the US and China remained after talks in Beijing last week yielded no significant solution.

The Nikkei Asia300 Index edged 0.2% higher to 1,396.40, despite all three equity benchmarks in the US climbing 1.3% or more on Friday, spurred by upbeat jobs data. Investors appeared to be disappointed that a meeting between a US delegation led by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Chinese officials on Thursday and Friday did not result in tangible solutions on bilateral trade issues facing the world’s largest economies, Nikkei reported.

Energy producers in the region advanced as US crude prices were poised for a fourth consecutive advance and traded above $70 a barrel for the first time in three-and-a-half years. CNOOC and PetroChina rose 3.1% and 2.7% in Hong Kong, respectively, while Oil and Natural Gas Corp. climbed 1.8% in Mumbai.

Personal-computer maker Lenovo Group fell 3.2% after Hong Kong’s stock index compiler on Friday said the stock will be removed from the benchmark Hang Seng Index with effect from June 4.

Tencent Holdings, Asia’s most valuable company, lost 0.7%, while Samsung Electronics dropped 2.1% in Seoul.

Chinese telecom-equipment maker ZTE said it has formally submitted a request for a stay of the US order which imposed a ban on the sale of parts to the Chinese company. Trading in the company’s shares has been halted since April 17.

China Vanke climbed 0.5% even as the property developer on Friday reported contracted sales of 41.89 billion yuan ($6.58 billion) for April, unchanged from the year-earlier period.

Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp. fell 3.5% after the lender reported a 29% increase in March quarter profit that came in slightly below market expectations. Net profit for the period rose to 1.11 billion Singapore dollars ($832 million), from S$861 million a year earlier. Analysts polled by Reuters were expecting a net profit of S$1.18 billion for the period.

DBS Group Holdings and United Overseas Bank, both of which reported first-quarter earnings last week, added 0.6% and 0.8%, respectively.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan put on 0.2%, while Chinese blue chips rose 1.2%. E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 inched up 0.36% and spread betters pointed to opening gains for the European bourses.

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