Asian stocks rise on prospect of gradual interest rate increase

TOKYO - Asian stocks posted broad gains Thursday after the Federal Reserve ended protracted uncertainty in markets by raising interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade and signalling that further increases will be gradual.

See Full Article

KEEPING SCORE: Japan's Nikkei 225 jumped 2 per cent to 19,424.99 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose nearly 1 per cent to 21,906.35. South Korea's Kospi added 0.2 per cent to 1,973.14. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 advanced 1.6 per cent to 5,107.20. China's Shanghai Composite gained 1.5 per cent to 3,567.31. Benchmarks in Taiwan, New Zealand and Southeast Asia also rose. The dollar gained against Asian currencies. It was up 0.5 per cent against the Korean won and gained 0.2 per cent versus the Indian rupee and Indonesia rupiah.

FED, FINALLY: The Federal Reserve raised its main interest rate by a quarter of a point, a move that was widely anticipated in the markets. That rate had been near zero for seven years to foster an economic recovery after the U.S. mortgage crisis that sparked a global recession. The rate hike was a long-expected vote of confidence in the U.S. economy, which is the world's biggest and a crucial market for exporters in trade-reliant Asia. At the same time investors were encouraged that the Fed emphasized that further increases will be gradual.

THE QUOTE: The rate hike "signals confidence in the ongoing recovery in the U.S. economy after the Great Financial Crisis," said Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy at AMP Capital. "Given ongoing deflationary risks and slow global growth, future Fed hikes are likely to be cautious and gradual," he said a report. "Global shares are likely to resume their rising trend but with U.S. shares as a relative underperformer. Bond yields are likely to remain low which should be positive for real assets."

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude was down 10 cents at $35.42 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The futures contract dropped $1.83, or 4.9 per cent, to close at $35.52 in New York on Wednesday. Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, was down 16 cents at $37.23 a barrel in London. It lost $1.26, or 3.3 per cent, to $37.19 in the previous session.

MAJOR CURRENCIES: The euro was little changed at $1.0836 from $1.0884 in the previous trading session. The dollar rose to 122.58 yen from 122.41 yen.


Latest Economic News

  • EU approves Bayer takeover of Monsanto after concessions

    Economic CTV News
    BRUSSELS -- The European Union has approved Bayer's buyout of Monsanto in a massive agriculture business deal, but says they will have to shed some $7.4 billion in firms and other remedies to ensure fair competition in the market. Source
  • Trump tariffs set off industry scramble for exemptions

    Economic CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- When U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross held up a can of Campbell's soup in a CNBC interview to make the case that the Trump administration's steel and aluminum tariffs were "no big deal," the canning industry begged to disagree -- and they were hardly alone. Source
  • Judge: Weinstein company can pay bills, work toward sale

    Economic CTV News
    DOVER, Del. -- A Delaware bankruptcy judge on Tuesday issued initial orders allowing the Weinstein Co. to continue paying its bills and working toward a sale of substantially all of its assets. Judge Mary Walrath's rulings include interim approval for the company to borrow up to $25 million to see it through bankruptcy, but only after she expressed concern about the loan terms in the face of a competing financing proposal. Source
  • World shares waver as investors await Fed decision on rates

    Economic CTV News
    SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of -- World shares were mostly lower Wednesday as some markets gave back early gains ahead of the Federal Reserve's first decision on interest rates since the appointment of its new chair, Jerome Powell. Source
  • Canadians to get emergency alerts on their phones soon

    Economic CTV News
    TORONTO -- Canada's wireless providers are preparing for a looming update to the National Public Alerting System that will force smartphones to sound an ominous alarm when an emergency alert is triggered. In case of emergencies including Amber Alerts, forest fires, natural disasters, terrorist attacks or severe weather, officials will be able to send a localized alert that will compel compatible phones on an LTE network to emit an alarm -- the same shrill beeping that accompanies TV and radio…
  • 'Too much stuff' — Why the self-storage industry is booming in Canada

    Economic CBC News
    ?You might think self-storage is one of the most boring businesses on the planet — if you've ever bothered to give it a thought. But guess again. A number of Canadian companies are investing big bucks to offer new, creative services that are transforming the industry. Source
  • New titanium industry could grow out of oilsands waste

    Economic CBC News
    After several years and nearly $100 million of research, engineers say they have developed new technology to extract valuable metals from the waste produced by the oilsands in northern Alberta. Canadian Natural Resources and Titanium Corp. Source
  • Liberals tried pilot project with Facebook data whistleblower in 2016: source

    Economic CTV News
    OTTAWA -- The Canadian data scientist who admitted to helping political parties score electoral wins by exploiting the private information of millions of Facebook users also oversaw a short-lived pilot project for the federal Liberals shortly after the 2015 election, The Canadian Press has learned. Source
  • 'Yeah, we can work with that': Auto talks mark potential NAFTA breakthrough

    Economic CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- A potential breakthough to an impasse over automobiles has created a new sense of optimism in the NAFTA negotiations, with different players Tuesday declaring themselves more hopeful of a deal than they have been in some time. Source
  • Ontario Teachers takes $400M stake in Assassin's Creed producer Ubisoft

    Economic CTV News
    TORONTO -- The Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan is spending about $400 million to take a 3.4 per cent stake in French video game giant Ubisoft as part of a complex deal that will allow French conglomerate Vivendi to sell all of its Ubisoft shares. Source