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Asian markets rise on bargain hunting

January 15, 2009

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HONG KONG, Jan 14: Asian stock markets rose slightly on Wednesday as investors moved in to buy up bargains following losses across the board over the previous two days.

As dealers waited on the sidelines ahead of next week’s inauguration of United States president-elect Barack Obama, many bourses were directionless, analysts said.

Unless new measures for an economic stimulus package come out by that day, gains may be limited, Kenji Shiomura, market analyst at Daiwa Securities, told Dow Jones Newswires.

Tokyo added 0.29 per cent following a heavy loss on Tuesday, while Hong Kong rose 0.3 per cent to end six straight days of falls.

Sydney lifted 0.89 percent but the biggest gainer of the day was Shanghai, which jumped 3.52 per cent on the back of better-than-expected bank lending data.

TOKYO: Up 0.29 per cent. The Nikkei-225 index gained 24.54 points to 8,438.45 a day after plunging 4.79 per cent. The broader Topix index of all first-section shares climbed 5.27 points, or 0.65 per cent, to 819.39.

Toshiba rose 6.0 percent to 408 yen after the high-tech giant said it was in talks to buy Fujitsu’s loss-making hard disk drive business. Fujitsu climbed 5.3 percent to 415 yen.

HONG KONG: Up 0.3 per cent. The Hang Seng Index added 36.56 points to 13,704.61, after losing 12.2 per cent over the previous six sessions. Turnover was 66.23 billion Hong Kong dollars (8.49 billion US).

Bank of China rose 2.7 per cent to 1.90 dollars. The stock had lost 13.6 per cent since Thursday, after Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing trimmed his stake in the lender.

SYDNEY: Up 0.89 per cent. The S&P/ASX 200 gained 32.4 points to 3,687, while the broader All Ordinaries closed 30.4 points higher at 3,624.3.

Volume was one billion shares worth 2.6 billion dollars (1.7 billion US).

ANZ Banking Group added 3.2 per cent to 15.33, National Australia Bank was 1.6 per cent firmer at 20.67 and Westpac climbed 1.2 per cent to 16.75.

Telstra shed 0.3 per cent to 3.73 and Qantas was 0.8 per cent firmer at 2.54.

SINGAPORE: Up 0.16 per cent. The main Straits Times Index rose 2.90 points to 1,764.72 on volume of 918 million shares worth 928 million Singapore dollars (625m US).

The index rose for the first time after falling for six consecutive sessions as traders sought bargains, dealers said.

KUALA LUMPUR: Flat. The Kuala Lumpur Composite Index lost 0.24 points to close at 913.46.

Among advancing stocks, UEM Land rose 12.9 per cent to 83 sen and TM was 2.5 per cent stronger at 3.26 ringgit, while Tenaga lost 0.8 percent to 6.40 ringgit.

JAKARTA: Down 0.9 per cent. The Jakarta Composite Index closed 12.83 points down at 1,386.90 in thin volume.

MUMBAI: Up 3.3 percent. The 30-share Sensex index rose 299.13 points to 9,370.49, snapping four consecutive days of losses.

WELLINGTON: Up 0.44 per cent. The benchmark NZX-50 index rose 12.14 points to close at 2,786.78 on turnover worth $48.36 million (26.9 million US).

Market leader Telecom fell four cents to $2.48 and Fletcher Building dropped 10 cents to 5.89. Port of Tauranga dropped 12 cents to $6.38.—AFP