Asian Markets Rise
Indian shares climbed to their highest close in more than three weeks on the government proposals to cut the deficit and ease the tax burden on individuals,
Indian shares climbed to their highest close in more than three weeks on the government proposals to cut the deficit and ease the tax burden on individuals, while Japanese stocks gained on better-than-expected industrial-output data. Asian markets were also encouraged by a late recovery on Wall Street Thursday, although U.S. benchmarks ended in the red.
The end of last week saw in Mumbai the Sensex gaining 1.1% to 16429.55, its highest close since Feb. 3, as Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said the fiscal-deficit target for the year starting April 1 would be 5.5% of gross domestic product, down from an estimated 6.9% this year. State Bank of India also jumped 3.2%, and private-sector lender ICICI Bank added 2.4%. Tata Motors, which swung to a third-quarter consolidated net profit, jumped 6.3%.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index added 1% to 20608.70, capping a month in which the index gained 2.4%. That was its best monthly showing since October. Cathay Pacific Airways climbed 2.1% in the wake of news Thursday that it has finalized plans for an air-cargo joint venture with China’s national carrier Air China. The joint venture will give the company access to the Yangtze River Delta, China’s booming industrial hub.
Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average of 225 companies rose 0.2% to 10126.03, as better-than-expected industrial output data helped to soften the blow of a stronger yen. That moved the index fractionally higher for the week. However, it shed 0.7% for all of February. Car makers were up; Toyota Motor rose 1.8% and Mazda Motor jumped 4%, aided by the manufacturing data. Suzuki Motor gained 1.1%, despite announcing recalls of 432,366 vehicles in Japan due to air-conditioning defects.
In Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 gained 1% to 4637.72, pushing this benchmark into positive territory for the week as well. Australia & New Zealand Banking Group gained 4% after underlying first quarter profit rose 16%. AGL Energy added 4.1% after reporting higher-than-expected six-month earnings.
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