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Asian stocks rise as tech boost offsets Fed jitters; China leads

Asian stocks rise as tech boost offsets Fed jitters; China leads

LANGKATODAY - Most Asian stocks rose on Monday as technology shares tracked strong gains in their Wall Street peers, while Chinese markets advanced after the government further loosened some restrictions on the property market.

Regional markets looked past fears of higher-for-longer U.S. rates following strong inflation data released last week. But said fears are expected to ramp up as a Federal Reserve meeting draws closer this week.

Tech was the best performer for the day, tracking a strong session on Wall Street on Friday following blowout earnings from Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL). U.S. stock index futures rose in Asian trade on Monday.

Strength in tech also helped markets look past data showing sticky U.S. inflation, which sets up the prospect of more hawkish signals from a Federal Reserve meeting later this week.

Anticipation of the meeting is expected to limit gains in Asian markets.

Chinese stocks rise on property cheer, PMIs awaited

China’s Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 and Shanghai Composite indexes rose 1.3% and 0.8%, respectively, outperforming most of their regional peers.

Gains were driven chiefly by property stocks, after the Chinese government announced measures to further loosen home purchase restrictions across major cities.

The move was aimed at bolstering the property market, which is grappling with a three-year slump and has been a key pressure point for the Chinese economy.

Gains in Chinese stocks also came just days before key purchasing managers index data for April, which is expected to offer more cues on an economic recovery in the country.

A string of key Chinese company earnings are also on tap this week, particularly from China’s biggest state-owned banks and oil and gas firms.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was the best performer in Asia, rising 1.7% on gains in technology and property stocks. The index was now trading 20% above five-year lows hit in late January, and was close to entering bull market territory.

Tech boosted by AI hopes

Other Asian tech-heavy indexes also advanced. South Korea’s KOSPI added 0.8% on gains in heavyweight chipmaking stocks.

Gains in chipmakers also saw Taiwan’s Taiwan Weighted index add over 1%.

Sentiment towards tech was boosted chiefly by stronger-than-expected earnings from U.S. tech titans Microsoft and Alphabet, which triggered a rally on Wall Street on Friday.

Strong earnings from the two spurred hopes that increased demand for artificial intelligence will continue to generate value for tech stocks.

Other Asian stocks also advanced on Monday. Broad-based gains lifted Australia’s ASX 200 by 0.8%, while futures for India’s Nifty 50 index pointed to a marginally positive open. The Nifty is set for some volatility this week with the 2024 general elections.

Japanese markets were closed for a holiday.

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