Sat, 17 Apr 2021

SYDNEY, NSW, Australia - Stocks in Hong Kong and mainland China jumped sharply on Wednesday dragging up indices in Australia and Japan.

The Hang Seng in Hong Kong was the stand-out with the key index rising 784.56 points or 2.70 percent to 29,880.42.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 climbed 150.93 points or 0.51 percent to 29,559.10.

China's Shanghai Composite rose 68.31 points or 1.95 percent to 3,576.90.

The Australian market was helped by strong GDP data being recorded in the fourth quarter of 2020. The economy grew at a rate of 3.10 percent, well ahead of projections of 2.50 percent.

"The big picture is that while the initial recovery through the first half of 2021 may still be subject to air-pockets and jobs vulnerabilities linger... Australia is unambiguously on a surer path to sustained recovery," Reuters Thomson quoted Mizuho analysts as saying in a note.

The Australian All Ordinaries stacked on 58.00 points or 0.83 percent to close at 7,067.90.

The U.S. dollar was little changed in Asian trading. The euro was steady after recent gains, last trading around the Sydney close on Wednesday at 1.2081. The British pound spiked higher to 1.3951. The Japanese yen weakened a touch to 106.88. The Swiss franc was a tad stronger at 0.9152.

The Canadian dollar was little changed at 1.2630. The Australian dollar firmed to 0.7817. The New Zealand dollar declined to 0.7286.

Overnight on Wall Street, the Nasdaq Composite lost230.04 points or 1.69 percent to close at 13,358.79.

The Standard and Poor's 500 was off 31.63 points or 0.81 percent at 3,870.29.

The Dow Jones industrials gave up 143.99 points or 0.46 percent to 31,391.52.

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