- Asia Stocks Maintain Gains as BOJ Keeps Rate Ahead of ECB Policy
Asian equities maintained their rally, rising to the highest since 2007 as the Bank of Japan kept its monetary stimulus program unchanged ahead of its European counterpart’s policy decision later in the day.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose for a ninth day in a row, adding 0.2 percent to 159.26 as of 12:02 p.m. in Hong Kong, heading toward its longest winning streak since April 2015 amid a continued string of record highs in U.S. stocks. Financial shares led the advance as Morgan Stanley reported better-than-expected earnings results. Energy companies were the second best performer on the benchmark as oil holds gains near $47 a barrel as U.S. crude and gasoline stockpiles extended declines.
Japan’s Topix index extended its gains as much as 0.8% after the midday break as the BOJ maintained its monetary stimulus policy and pushed back the projected timing for reaching 2 percent inflation for the sixth time.
The European Central Bank, like the Bank of Japan, is expected to keep the current “accomodative” policy environment unchanged and it might continue to guide market expectations with a “future tapering” plan, Jingyi Pan, market strategist at IG Asia Pte Ltd. said by phone.
A report that the ECB has been examining options for asset purchases adds to speculation that Mario Draghi will concede that the time is approaching to adjust the bond-buying program as the economic recovery expands.
- Topix index +0.7%, Nikkei 225 Index +0.6%
- Topix Extends Higher After Midday Break as BOJ Maintains Rate
- Hang Seng Index +0.3%, Hang Seng China Enterprises Index little changed, Shanghai Composite Index +0.2%, Taiex -0.1%
- Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index +0.6%, New Zealand’s NZX 50 -0.6%
- Kospi Index +0.1%, Kospi 200 Index +0.1%
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- Straits Times Index -0.2%, FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI Index -0.1%, Philippine Stock Exchange PSEi Index -0.4%, Jakarta Composite Index +0.3%
- Sensex Index +0.1%, Nifty 50 Index +0.2%