Nikkei 225 Index gained 1.33%, KOSPI Index rose 2.02% and Hang Seng Index added 0.68%
Share market Asia rose on Wednesday, with the major Asia-Pacific stock indexes finishing higher, but shares in China took a hit with the benchmark Shanghai Index dropping more than 1%. Bullish traders were mostly influenced by the rollout of the coronavirus vaccine in the U.K., while sellers in China reacted to weak consumer inflation data and rising Sino-U.S. tensions.
In the cash market on Wednesday, Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index settled at 26817.94, up 350.86 or +1.33%. South Korea’s KOSPI Index finished at 2755.47, up 54.54 or +2.02% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index closed at 26484.59, up 180.03 or +0.68%.
In China, the Shanghai Index settled at 3371.96, down 38.21 or -1.12% and in Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 finished at 6728.50, up 40.80 or +0.61%.
The U.K. rolled out the first coronavirus vaccines to the public on Tuesday, making it the first country to inoculate people with a treatment that went through full testing.
Johnson’s sentiment was echoed by NHS England’s Chief Executive Simon Stevens, who said on Monday that it was a “decisive turning point in the battle against coronavirus.”
China’s consumer price index fell in November for the first time in about a decade as food prices dropped.
The consumer price index, a measure of inflation that tracks prices for a basket of consumer goods and services, fell 0.5% in November from a year ago, China’s National Bureau of Statistics said Wednesday.
The decline marked the first drop since October 2009, according to the Wind Information database.
Core CPI, which excludes food and energy prices, rose 0.5% in November from a year ago. The producer price index (PPI), which measures prices of goods and services from the perspective sellers, fell 1.5% in November from a year ago. That was 0.6 percentage points less of a decline versus October’s figure, the statistics bureau said.
Economists did not expect major changes in monetary policy from the People’s Bank of China as a result of the drop in CPI. With the PPI narrowing, China’s central bank may look past the overall drop in consumer prices and focus on reducing some stimulus.