Asian shares join Wall Street rally as Trump fears ease

By KELVIN CHAN

HONG KONG (AP) — Asian shares rallied Thursday, extending a surprising global recovery as Donald Trump's conciliatory acceptance speech comments helped soothe world financial markets spooked by his unexpected U.S. election victory.

The rebound in Asia took its lead from Wall Street, where stocks initially wavered before advancing the rest of the day. Major U.S. benchmarks all finished more than 1 percent higher, with the Dow Jones industrial average near a record high close.

Japan's share benchmark, the Nikkei 225 index, which was among the biggest losers on Wednesday, jumped 6 percent at the open. By midday it was up 5.7 percent at 17,178.87.

The dollar also recovered in currency trading. It was at 105.33 yen after dropping to near 101 yen the day before.

In other Asian trading, South Korea's Kospi advanced 1.9 percent to 1,996.31 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 2 percent to 22,865.45. The Shanghai Composite index in mainland China rose 1 percent to 3,158.34 and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 surged 2.7 percent to 5,297.10.

Benchmarks in Taiwan, Singapore, the Philippines, Indonesia and Thailand also advanced.

Trump pledged in his speech Wednesday to unify a deeply divided nation, helping to calm jitters in global financial markets. Investors had worried because his campaign promises carried few policy details, making him an unknown quantity compared with his rival, Hillary Clinton, seen as a safe choice.

"The stunning turn in sentiment suggests there is now a consensus building that much of the policy announced during the campaign was a sales pitch rather than a commitment to act," said Michael McCarthy, chief strategist at CMC Markets.

"Investors ignored the potential for damage to international trade and growth prospects and focused on Republican control of both houses of Congress as well as the White House. This offers the prospect of reform that could stimulate the U.S. economy," he added.

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