Asian markets were mostly higher in early trading Wednesday, following gains on Wall Street after stocks started the week down on fears of an escalating trade war between the U.S. and China.
President Donald Trump on Tuesday downplayed tensions, calling the situation a “little squabble” and stressing what a good relationship he has with China’s President Xi Jinping. But he also hinted at imposing 25% tariffs on another $325 billion of Chinese goods — essentially everything China exports to the U.S.
Read: China’s economic activity cools in April
Japan’s Nikkei NIK, +0.17% was last about flat. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index HSI, +0.70% rose 0.7% while the Shanghai Composite SHCOMP, +1.10% advanced about 1%. South Korea’s Kospi SEU, +0.68% advanced 0.6%, and Taiwan’s Taiex Y9999, +0.72% jumped 0.8%, while benchmark indexes in Singapore STI, -0.06% and Indonesia JAKIDX, -1.05% were about flat. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 XJO, +0.61% rose 0.5%.
Among individual stocks, Nissan Motor 7201, -7.03% plunged after posting its worst fiscal-year earnings in 11 years Tuesday, and warned of more losses to come. Elsewhere in Tokyo trading, Takeda Pharmaceutical 4502, -7.96% sank, as did Yahoo Japan 4689, -3.43% . In Hong Kong, food processor WH Group 0288, +5.01% , which has been battered amid a swine fever outbreak, rose. Insurer AIA Group 1299, +2.77% and oil producer CNOOC 0883, +1.67% also gained. LG Electronics 066570, +1.54% rose in South Korea, as did Taiwan Semiconductor 2330, +1.01% in Taiwan. BHP BHP, +1.51% advanced in Australia, along with Rio Tinto RIO, +1.68% and Beach Energy BPT, +3.82% .
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