Asian shares jump on US-China trade optimism

Asian shares have reached nine-month highs on Monday after news that US-China trade talks were nearing an end

Trump and XI Source: Bloomberg

US treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin said he hoped talks between the two countries were close to approaching their final lap.

US-China progress

It comes after, Mnuchin said on Saturday that a US-China trade agreement would go "way beyond" previous efforts to open China's markets to US companies. He said he hoped that the two sides were "close to the final round" of negotiations.

According to a Reuters report published on Monday, US negotiators have toughened demands on China to curb industrial subsidies as a condition for a trade deal. It follows strong resistance from Beijing.

Asian shares

Meanwhile, strong Chinese export and bank loan data improved sentiment. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.6% to the highest since July.

Chinese shares led the growth with the blue-chip CSI300 index rising 2.2 % on Monday, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 1.2%. South Korea’s KOSPI climbed 0.7%.

The Nikkei gained 1.4% to its highest since December.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 1.2% while South Korea's KOSPI rose 0.7%.

Investors are also factoring in China's March-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) to be released on Wednesday.

Currencies

The dollar index was 0.1% weaker at 96.863 on Monday after it slipped near a three-week trough of 96.745 on Friday, as demand for safe haven assets eased.

The Australian dollar reached a near a seven-week top at $0.7173, while the euro firmed at $1.1309.


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