Asian Stocks Rise as Bank Shares Gain Down Under; Sinopec Jumps

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  • Australian banks help lead the nation’s benchmark index higher
  • Japanese shares give up early gains; Topix halts 6-day rise

Asian stocks advanced as Australian banks buoyed the benchmark Down Under to the highest level since August. Japanese shares gave up early gains while Chinese stocks fell. The U.S. Federal Reserve meets today with bets on a rate increase still at 100 percent.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.1 percent to 138.64 as of 4:32 p.m. in Hong Kong, led by telecommunications and energy companies. Seven of the 11 primary groups advanced as the index climbed for a second session. The gauge has advanced 0.2 percent so far this week, while the S&P 500 Index posted a 0.5 percent gain to a fresh record.

MSCI AP Index is trading within a small interval as investors await the Fed’s decision.

  • Westpac Banking and Commonwealth Bank of Australia led the nation’s benchmark in terms of index points; U.S. large-cap banks are “growth stocks,” Morgan Stanley said earlier
    • Tatts Group surged after a group including Morgan Stanley and KKR offered to buy the company for as much as $5.5 billion
  • Japan’s Topix stock index fell, ending a six-day rally, amid speculation gains have been too rapid before the Federal Reserve sets policy.
  • Hong Kong stocks closed little changed as Sinopec jumped as much as 6.2 percent intraday; the Chinese oil refiner is reviving a long-mooted initial public offering of its retail business that could raise as much as $10 billion, according to people familiar with the matter
  • Major Asian stock indexes: Nikkei 225 little changed, Topix down 0.1 percent, S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.7 percent, Hang Seng Index little changed, Shanghai Composite fell 0.5 percent, Shenzhen Composite dropped 0.8 percent

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