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Asian Stocks Rebound Despite Global Uncertainty

JOE McDONALD

BEIJING (AP) â¿¿ Asian stock markets rebounded Friday, led by gains in technology and oil companies, despite uncertainty about the fragile global economy.

Crude rose above $93, clawing back some of its recent large fall and helping to boost energy stocks.

Strong orders for Apple's iPhone 5, which went on sale Friday starting in Asia, gave a general boost to sentiment in the technology sector.

The regional heavyweight, Tokyo's Nikkei 225 index, gained 0.2 percent to 9,110.0 while China's benchmark Shanghai Composite Index added 0.1 percent to 2,026.69. Hong Kong, Seoul and Sydney also rose.

In Europe, France's CAC 40 rose 0.5 percent to 3,528.01 and Germany's DAX gained 0.3 percent to 7,409.49. Wall Street was set to rise with Dow futures up 0.4 percent and S&P 500 futures up 0.3 percent.

Asian gains helped to reverse some of the week's losses after Japanese data showed exports suffered from debt-crippled Europe's downturn and a Chinese index showed manufacturing contracted in September.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 0.7 percent to 20,734.94. Seoul's Kospi index added 0.6 percent to 2,002.37 and Sydney's ASX/S&P 200 rose 0.3 percent to 4,408.30. India's Sensex was up 2.1 percent 18,732.4.

In China, Asia's biggest oil and gas producer, PetroChina Ltd. and rival CNOOC Ltd. added 1.4 percent. China Mobile Ltd., the world's biggest phone carrier by subscribers, rose 2 percent.

U.S. markets ended mixed Thursday following disappointing economic reports that showed higher-than-expected unemployment and a contraction in manufacturing. The Standard & Poor's 500 and Nasdaq composite indices fell while the Dow Jones industrial average gained.

"It just seems like global markets are going through a bit of a consolidation phase at the moment," said IG markets strategist Stan Shamu in a report.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia said a manufacturing index showed regional activity contracted in September for a fifth straight month. That was despite the U.S. Federal Reserve's latest effort last week to stimulate the economy.

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