Asian stocks rose, with the regional benchmark index heading to a one-week high, as energy shares led the advance. Chinese equities declined after economic data suggested a sluggish response to stimulus.
Inpex Corp. climbed 1.6 percent in Tokyo, pacing gains among energy explorers as crude oil futures extended gains above $61 a barrel. Santen Pharmaceutical Co. surged 14 percent after Nomura Holdings Inc. raised its rating to buy. Huaneng Power International Inc. sank 4.4 percent as Chinese utilities slid. China Resources Land Ltd. plunged 6.3 percent in Hong Kong after the state-owned developer raised $1.3 billion in a share sale.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index gained 0.3 percent to 151.95 as of 4:09 p.m. in Hong Kong, erasing losses of as much as 0.2 percent. Data today showed China’s industrial output rose less than expected in April while investment slowed to the weakest pace in more than 14 years, suggesting more easing may be needed to spur a pick-up.
“Asian equities look resilient partly because investors expect further easing in China,” Bernard Aw, a markets strategist at IG Ltd. in Singapore, said by phone. “The resilience we’re seeing now could continue for a bit until something more concrete happens like if the Greek situation deteriorates significantly.”
The European Central Bank opted against tightening terms for aiding Greece and raised the cap on funding in a telephone conference on Tuesday, according to people familiar with the matter. U.S. and German benchmark bond yields are near the highest levels this year after a three-week selloff.
Japan’s Topix index added 0.1 percent, erasing losses of as much as 0.8 percent. South Korea’s Kospi index climbed 0.8 percent. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index increased 0.7 percent. New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index gained 0.1 percent. Taiwan’s Taiex index advanced 0.5 percent. Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.4 percent.
China’s Shanghai Composite Index slipped 0.6 percent after surging 4.6 percent on Monday and Tuesday. The People’s Bank of China over the weekend cut interest rates for the third time in six months. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland shares traded in Hong Kong fell 0.8 percent, while the benchmark Hang Seng Index slid 0.6 percent.
E-mini futures on the S&P 500 rose 0.4 percent. The underlying measure fell 0.3 percent on Tuesday, paring a loss of as much as 0.9 percent as yields on the 10-year Treasury note retreated from the highest level since November. An auction of three-year notes drew the strongest bidding since 2009.