Nikkei leads Asian gains on US lead

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Continue reading the main story

Japanese shares led Asian markets into positive territory, taking the cue from Wall Street where US shares made gains.

The Dow Jones rose 0.03% to 17,678.7, while the S&P 500 gained 0.3% to 2,057.09 as a blizzard bared down on the Northeast region of the US.

In Japan, the benchmark Nikkei 225 was up 1.5% to 17,734.81 after closing lower on Monday on the anti-austerity Syriza party win in Greece.

The dollar firmed against the yen at 118.5 from Monday’s low of 117.26.

Shares of Toyota were up 1.2% after a local report that the automaker will change the way it pays factory workers, focusing on their performance rather than their seniority.

China bucks trend

Chinese shares bucked the region’s uptrend to trade lower with the Shanghai Composite down 0.1% to 3,379.87.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index was lower 0.2% to 24,871.83 after a five-day rally.

Australian shares were higher after being closed for a public holiday on Monday.

The S&P/ASX 200 was up 0.7% to 5,539.1 points.

In South Korea, shares were boosted by a central bank survey which showed that consumer sentiment had improved for the first time in four months in January.

The Bank of Korea’s consumer sentiment index, ticked up to 102 from a revised 101 in December.

A reading above 100 indicates that consumers who expect economic conditions to improve outnumber those expecting deterioration.

The benchmark Kospi index was up 0.5% to 1,945.04.

Nikkei Futures

nikkeifutures.org@imediaone.com

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