Asian shares climb on Wall Street rally, stimulus hopes

Asian shares climb on Wall Street rally, stimulus hopes


TOKYO (AP) — Asian shares were mostly higher Friday on hopes for additional economic stimulus after President-elect Joe Biden takes office.

A new state of emergency in the Tokyo region to combat surging coronavirus cases did little to dampen market optimism. The benchmark Nikkei 225 surged 2.4% to close at 28,139.03, its highest finish in more than 30 years.

The emergency declaration, announced by Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga for Tokyo and nearby areas, asks people to stay home and refrain from going out at night to dine and drink.

South Korea's Kospi gained nearly 4.0% to 3,152.27, while Australia's S&P/ASX 200 edged up 0.7% to 6,757.90. Hong Kong's Hang Seng jumped 1.2% to 27,879.84, while the Shanghai Composite slipped 0.2% to 3,568.91.

Regional share prices were boosted by major U.S. stock indexes surging to all-time highs.

“Asia markets tracked the Wall Street optimism for a second morning, climbing amid the sustained hopes of further fiscal injections in the U.S. to keep the recovery on track,” said Jingyi Pan, a market strategist at IG in Singapore.

The S&P 500 rose 1.5% to a record 3,803.79. Investors were reassured by Congress’ confirmation of Biden’s presidential election win and a shift in control of the Senate to the Democrats and largely moved on from the previous day’s violence and chaos at the Capitol building.

President Donald Trump has issued a statement saying there will be an “orderly transition on January 20th,” although he continues to claim falsely that he won. Democratic victories in the two runoffs held Tuesday for Georgia's U.S. Senate seats tipped the Senate to 50-50 split, with potential ties being broken by Vice President-elect Kamala Harris.

With Democrats fully in control of Washington, Wall Street is...

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