Asia markets trade higher as US-China trade talks extend into third day

Asia markets saw gains during Wednesday morning trade as investors remained cautiously optimistic Beijing and Washington could move forward on a trade deal.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 advanced 0.71 percent in early trade while the Topix gained almost 0.9 percent, with most sectors trading up.

South Korea’s Kospi also gained 0.56 percent as shares of industry heavyweight Samsung Electronics advanced about 1.3 percent and steelmaker Posco rose more than 1.6 percent.

Australia’s benchmark ASX 200 rose more than 0.4 percent in morning trade, with most sectors advancing. The energy subindex added 1.34 percent on the back of Tuesday’s strong gain in oil prices. Oil stocks gained: shares of Santos rose 1.22 percent, Woodside Petroleum up 1.60 percent and Beach Energy advanced 2.07 percent.






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Trade talks extended

The mainland Chinese markets, which have been watched in relation to Beijing’s ongoing trade fight with Washington, are set to open at 9:30 a.m. HK/SIN.

Investors will be watching out for developments on the U.S.-China trade front after negotiations between the world’s two largest economies extended into an unscheduled third day, according to Reuters.

“I confirm we’re continuing tomorrow, yes,” said Steven Winberg, assistant secretary for Fossil Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy.

The new round of talks began on Monday as the two countries seek to strike an agreement amidst the ongoing trade war, which saw the U.S. and China slap punitive tariffs on each other’s goods.

U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted that the trade talks are “going very well.”

In overnight market action on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 256.10 points to close at 23,787.45 — its first three-day winning streak since late November. The S&P 500 advanced 0.97 percent to 2,574.41 while the Nasdaq Composite gained 1.1 percent to close at almost 6,897.

For the year so far, the Dow and S&P 500 have risen 1.97 percent and 2.7 percent, respectively. The Nasdaq is up nearly 4 percent in that time period.


The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 95.903 after touching an earlier high of 96.028.

The Japanese yen, widely seen as a safe-haven currency, traded at 108.75 against the greenback after seeing lows close to 109 in the previous session. The Australian dollar was at $0.7163 after seeing lows above $0.711 in the previous session.

— Reuters and CNBC’s Fred Imbert contributed to this report.

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