Asian shares gained on Monday in morning session led by Japanese shares after Wall Street rallied on an easing of tensions in Ukraine, although conflicts in other geopolitical hotspots such as Iraq limited gains.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index advanced 0.8% to 145 as of 10:32 a.m. in Tokyo. Japan’s Topix jumped 1.3% today, rebounding from a 2.4% slump on 8 August after a report the nation’s pension fund freed itself to buy more domestic equities.
South Korea’s Kospi index climbed 0.4%. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index added 0.6%, while New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index was little changed. Markets in Thailand are closed through tomorrow for holidays.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index added 0.8% after mainland inflation data signaled policy makers still have room for monetary easing amid a lack of pressure on prices. China’s Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.4%. Taiwan’s Taiex Index added 0.5%. Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.4%.
In geopolitical news, Ukraine’s military has demanded pro-Russia rebels in the former Soviet republic’s east surrender, dismissing the insurgents’ offer of a cease-fire as they push ahead with their campaign.
In the Middle East, Israel and Gaza Strip militants began to observe another Egypt-brokered truce, giving negotiators time to craft a more enduring accord after a month of violence in the Hamas-ruled territory
China’s consumer inflation remained below the government’s goal in July and factory-gate deflation persisted, a report showed over the weekend.
In company news, Mitsui Mining & Smelting Co., a maker of lead and copper alloys, jumped 7.4% in Tokyo after raising its full-year profit forecast. Japan Tobacco Inc. gained 3.1%, providing the biggest boost to the Topix index. Malaysian Airline System Bhd. soared 8.3% after sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd. offered to take the carrier private.
SK Hynix Inc., a South Korean maker of semiconductors, gained 1.7% after Eugene Investment & Securities Co. said higher estimated chip prices will boost second-half earnings.