Asia Stocks Rise As US Jobs Picture Improves
BANGKOK (AP) World stock markets rose Monday, boosted by stronger-than-expected U.S. hiring for July following three months of weak job gains.
Investors scooped up shares on news that the pace of hiring in the world's biggest economy was improving and were also heartened by a softening of Italy's and Spain's sovereign bond yields a sign of less worry about those economies. That helped dispel fears that the 17-nation euro currency union could face a breakup as it wrestles with a massive debt crisis.
"I think people are no longer worried that the eurozone will collapse, so confidence has returned to the market," said Francis Lun, managing director of Lyncean Holdings in Hong Kong.European stock markets rose in early trading. Britain's FTSE 100 was almost 0.1 percent higher at 5,792.45. Germany's DAX added 0.5 percent to 6,898.32 and France's CAC-40 rose 0.2 percent to 3,381.39. Wall Street appeared set for a slightly higher opening. Dow Jones industrial futures were marginally higher at 13,062 and S&P 500 futures gained 0.2 percent to 1,390.90. A weekend statement by the People's Bank of China indicating it would intensify policy fine-tuning also helped investment sentiment by raising hopes for more monetary easing, analysts said. "It seems that policy focus in China has indeed shifted quite dramatically towards supporting growth," Dariusz Kowalczyk at Credit Agricole CIB in Hong Kong said in a market commentary. That was among factors helping to lead Asian stock markets sharply higher. Japan's Nikkei 225 index rose 2 percent to finish at 8,726.29 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng climbed 1.7 percent to 19,998.72. South Korea's Kospi added 2 percent to 1,885.88 and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 was 1.2 percent higher at 4,272.60. Benchmarks in Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and the Philippines also rose. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite Index gained 1 percent to 2,154.92.
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