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Asian shares edge up led by healthcare sector

Asian shares edge up led by healthcare sector

Asian stocks gained on Monday in morning trade as euro zone banking jitters faded and telecommunications firms and healthcare shares advanced.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index added 0.3% to 146 as of 9:42 a.m. in Hong Kong. Japan’s Topix index rose 0.3%. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index added 0.5%. New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index rose 0.2%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index gained 0.6% and the Shanghai Composite Index increased 0.1%.

Singapore’s Straits Times Index slid 0.1% as a report showed the economy unexpectedly contracted in the second quarter after manufacturing slumped, hurt by a tighter labor supply. Taiwan’s Taiex index added 0.1% and South Korea’s Kospi index advanced 0.4%.

In corporate news, SoftBank Corp. added 1.4% in Tokyo, leading phone companies to the largest gain among 10 industry groups on the regional index.

Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co. surged 4% after Canada approved the use of one of the Japanese pharmaceutical manufacturer’s drugs.

Hyundai Hysco Co. slumped 3.2% as the US government imposed duties on steel pipe from South Korea and eight other nations.

More than $1 trillion has been wiped from the value of global stocks since a peak reached 3 July, as analysts brought forward estimates for Fed rate increases and a parent of Portugal’s Banco Espirito Santo SA missed a bond payment, reigniting concerns over Europe’s financial stability as it emerges from its sovereign-debt crisis.

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