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Asia stocks buoyant on US-China trade developments

Asia stocks buoyant on US-China trade developments

Asia stocks rose on Monday in morning trade amid news that the US and China had stepped back from the brink of a trade war.

Japan's Nikkei 225 edged up by 0.13% in early Monday trade. The Topix was up 0.2% with gains for every market segment except financials, which fell 0.6%. Across the strait, the Kospi rose 0.35%.

Down Under, the S&P/ASX 200 index climbed 0.1% as losses of around 0.2% for both financial and mining stocks and a 0.9% drop by telecoms were offset by gains in tech and energy.  

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index rose 1%, with stocks climbing across the board. The technology segment was up 1.4% while industrials gained 1.1% and financials rose 0.5%.

There were positive developments in the US-China trade relationship over the weekend, with immediate fears of a trade war receding after US Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that the countries were "putting the trade war on hold" as they worked out an agreement.

Both the countries agreed to "substantially reduce" the US trade deficit with China in a joint statement on Saturday.

In individual movers, shares of LG Electronics were down 0.82% in early trade following news on Sunday that the chairman of LG Group, Koo Bon-moo, had passed away.

In currency news, the dollar index, which tracks the US currency against its peers, stood at 93.706. Against the yen, the greenback fetched 110.90 at 8:01 a.m. HK/SIN.

The Australian dollar traded at $0.7521, a touch above last Friday's close of $0.7511, with the improvement in investor sentiment seen to be buoying the currency.


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