For the first time in last 3 days, the Asian stocks have jumped ahead; as the regional gauge is now all set to get to the highest close since June, 2008. The US consumer sentiment exceeded estimates and Japanese utilities went ahead being led by Tokyo Electric Power Co.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index went ahead by 1.2% and it is now at 144.25. The measure has advanced by 12% in 2013, mainly led by Japanese shares, as the Bank of Japan took steps to counter deflation. Apart from that, data coming out of US signaled that the biggest economy in the world is improving currently.
According to the Departmental head of Asian research at Bank Julius Baer & Co., Mark Matthews, the numbers coming out are confirming a recovery. Matthews expects the rally to continue throughout the year. Matthews stated that the improvement in data is pretty steady in nature and next, investors will be expecting strong evidence that there is recovery in consumer sentiment as well.
On 17th May, the regional benchmark gauge was trading at 14.5 times of the estimated earnings. This is higher than what it is for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (15.1) or that of the Stoxx Europe 600 Index (13.5).
The benchmark stock index of Japan, the Topix Index went ahead by 1.3% and the same is currently at 1,269.51, marking its highest close since August, 2008. The trading volume on today was 12% higher than that of the average of the last 30 days. Japan’s stock gauge has advanced by 48% in 2013, marking the best gain among all the major equity indexes. On the other hand, the benchmark stock gauge of Australia, S&P/ASX 200 Index increased by 0.6%, whereas, NZX 50 Index of New Zealand was more or less unchanged.
Hang Seng Index of Hong Kong went ahead by 1.8%, mainly being helped by the largest Internet Company in China, Tencent Holdings’ jump of 6.3%. The benchmark stock gauge of China, the Shanghai Composite Index went ahead by 0.8%, on the other hand, Taiex Index of Taiwan saw an addition of 0.1%. The Straits Index of Singapore jumped ahead by 0.1%, whereas, the Kospi Index of South Korea went down by 0.2%. Among companies, Osaka Gas advanced to the highest level in the last 5 years after receiving approval for Texas liquefied natural gas project.