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Asian stock markets rise after Wall Street hits record high

Wall Street

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gained 0.37%, and Japan’s Nikkei advanced 0.27%

Asian stock markets rose on Tuesday after a record-setting day on Wall Street, while bitcoin paused for breath after an overnight endorsement from Tesla Inc sent the cryptocurrency up 20%.

Oil also hit 13-month highs, helped by rising optimism about a return in fuel demand,

However, in a sign that positive sentiment may run out in European trading, eurostoxx futures were down 0.05%, London’s FTSE futures fell 0.12%, and E-mini futures for the S&P 500 were flat.

Back in Asia, MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.37% to 722.95 after climbing as high as 730.16 late last month.

Gains were led by Chinese blue chips which were up 1.67%, while the Hong Kong benchmark rose 0.51% and Korea’s rose 0.27%, with chip giants benefiting from the bitcoin excitement.

Iris Pang chief economist for Greater China at ING said Chinese markets’ strong performance was a result of investors buying ahead of the Chinese New Year break, anticipating that prices would be higher after the holiday.

Chinese stock exchanges are closed for a week from Thursday.

Japan’s Nikkei was up 0.27%.

Tuesday’s gains in Asia matched the so-called reflation trades around the world, in which global markets bid up stocks, oil and gold while U.S. Treasury yields held shy of 11-month highs.

Reflation on the back of U.S. fiscal stimulus and positive vaccine news remains the major theme for markets, strategists at National Australia Bank wrote.

Expectations have been building that inflation would pick up as governments and central banks continue massive spending and easy money policies until officials are certain that their economies will recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Wall Street reached all-time closing highs on Monday as the Nasdaq Composite added nearly 1% and the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained about 0.75%.

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