Asia Stocks Head for Best Week in Month, Helped by Commodities

Kuroda Says BOJ Will Maintain Rates Depending on Economy

Stocks gained across Asia, with a rebound in commodity producers helping send the MSCI Asia Pacific Index toward its best week in a month.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.7 percent as of 4:50 p.m. in Hong Kong after U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said plans to reform taxes have progressed and Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said he will retain an accommodative policy stance. The Topix added 1.1 percent and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.6 percent.

Geopolitical concerns persist as traders face the weekend with the start of the French election. “Market sentiment still remains fragile ahead of the tight first round of the French election this Sunday,” Margaret Yang Yan, a market analyst at CMC Markets in Singapore, said in a note. “Volatility in the forex market is expected to surge in Asian trading hours on Monday morning.”

Iron ore futures price climbed 3.5percent, rising for a third day. Australia & New Zealand Banking Group said a recent selloff in the commodity was “overdone” amid bullish price signals.

Summary

  • Topix +1.1%, Nikkei 225 +1%
    • Kuroda Says Current Purchase Pace to Continue for Some Time
  • Shanghai Composite little changed; Hang Seng Index -0.1%, Hang Seng China Enterprises Index -0.1%; Taiwan’s Taiex +0.9%
    • China Stocks Cap This Year’s Worst Week Amid Crackdown Concerns
  • Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index +0.6%; New Zealand’s S&P/NZX 50 Index +0.1%
  • Kospi +0.7%
    • South Korea’s April Exports Send Positive Sign on Global Economy
  • Singapore’s Straits Times Index +0.3%; FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI +0.8%; Philippines Stock Exchange PSEi Index +0.2%; Vietnam Ho Chi Minh Stock Index little changed; Thailand’s SET Index +0.3%; Jakarta Composite Index +1%; India’s Sensex -0.4%
    • SEA Stocks to Get ‘Reprieve’ From EM Currencies: Morgan Stanley
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