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Asia stocks higher following Japan, China economic data


Nikkei 225 gained 0.3% to 39,693.29, Shanghai Composite jumped 0.3% to 2,976.64, and Kospi rose 0.2% to 2,802.87

Asian stocks were mostly higher on Monday after Japan and China reported data reflecting relatively sluggish growth.

The euro advanced after the far-right National Rally gained a strong lead in first-round legislative elections, while the Japanese yen dropped, trading at around 161 yen to the dollar. U.S. futures and oil prices gained.

Polling agencies suggest the National Rally might win a majority in the lower house of the parliament, but the outcome is uncertain as the voting system is complex.

The euro sat at $1.0757, up from $1.0713.

U.S. futures and oil prices gained.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 gained 0.3% to 39,693.29 after a quarterly survey by the BoJ, called the “tankan,” showed a modest improvement in confidence among the country’s biggest manufacturers in the April-June quarter.

However the government downgraded its estimate for growth in the first quarter of the year, to a minus 2.9% annual rate from the earlier figure of minus 1.8%.

Across all industries and firm sizes, business conditions held steady at 12, which is consistent with quarterly GDP growth of nearly 0%, Marcel Thieliant of Capital Economics said in evaluating the tankan. A renewed slowdown in GDP growth this quarter would be consistent with the slump in industrial production companies were predicting for June.

The Shanghai Composite jumped 0.3% to 2,976.64 after a survey of factory purchasing managers reported over the weekend showed conditions remained in contraction for a second consecutive month.

But a similar private-sector survey of manufacturing activity released Monday showed an improvement in business conditions. The Caixin Manufacturing PMI advanced to 51.8 in June on a scale up to 100, compared with 51.7 in the previous month. Readings above 50 are considered to show an expansion.

Hong Kong markets were closed for a holiday.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 declined 0.3% to 7,744.20. South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.2% to 2,802.87 after a private-sector survey showed South Korea’s factory activity was the best since April 2022.

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