Asia stocks pause after rally: Marketwatch

13.09.2013 12:38
Asia stocks pause after rally: Marketwatch

YEREVAN, September 13. /ARKA/. Asian stocks achieved strong gains for the week, especially in Southeast Asia, though regional markets were mostly lower on Friday ahead of next week’s key Federal Reserve policy meeting.

Stocks across Asia posted healthy returns since last Friday, as further signs of an economic recovery in China combined with lower expectations of U.S. military intervention in Syria supported regional risk sentiment.

Notable events during the week include Australia closing at a more than five-year high on Wednesday and the Shanghai Composite enjoying its biggest percentage gain so far in 2013 on Monday.

The Shanghai Composite CN:SHCOMP -0.86% has risen 4.3% so far this week, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 AU:XJO -0.44% gained 1.5%.

Some of the best performers were in Southeast Asia, where markets have had a turbulent summer — the result of fears that the U.S. Federal Reserve could scale back its bond-buying program, which induced several sell-offs as investors pulled money out of these small markets.

Indonesia’s JSX ID:JAKIDX +0.17% was up 6.9% week-to-date and Thailand’s SET TH:SET -0.94% added 4.3% over the same period.

On Friday, a negative lead from Wall Street and a lack of regional trading cues weighed on Asia. Markets are already anticipating next week’s Fed policy meeting, where some expect the central bank to start removing stimulus.

The sharpest losses were recorded in China, where the Shanghai Composite fell 1%, as cyclical shares that have rallied in recent sessions pulled back.

Firms that have surged in recent sessions on expectations of greater profits from the forthcoming Shanghai Free Trade Zone also retreated on Friday: Shanghai International Port (Group) CN:600018 -2.55% slid 4.6%.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.4% and South Korea’s Kospi KR:SEU -0.49% was down 0.5%.
Japan’s Nikkei JP:NIK +0.12% slipped 0.5% as investors consolidated their positions before the upcoming three-day weekend. –0--

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