News Column

Asian stocks mostly higher after China data

June 2, 2014

YOUKYUNG LEE, AP Business Writer

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) Asian stocks were mostly higher Tuesday after a second Chinese manufacturing survey suggested the slowdown in the world's No. 2 economy is stabilizing.

Japan'sNikkei 225, the regional heavyweight, rose 0.8 percent to 15,049.83 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.6 percent to 23,226.84. Stocks in mainland China, Taiwan and the Philippines also gained.

But South Korea's Kospi lost 0.2 percent to 1,998.86. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 dropped 0.3 percent to 5,503.20.

Investor sentiment was boosted by a survey of China's factories that showed a contraction in manufacturing was easing.

The HSBC index, which is based on a survey of factory purchasing managers, climbed to 49.4 last month from 48.1 in April. The index uses a 100-point scale on which numbers above 50 indicate expansion. The number was weaker than 49.7 in a preliminary version of the survey because of a revision to stocks of finished goods.

On the weekend, the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing said Chinese manufacturing grew for the third consecutive month in May. Its survey focuses on state owned companies while the HSBC survey is weighted more to private businesses.

U.S. stocks climbed Monday after a revised U.S. manufacturing report showed U.S. manufacturing industries expanded in May. The Institute for Supply management corrected its earlier statement that U.S. manufacturing slowed last month.

The Dow closed up 0.2 percent to 16,743.63 and the Standard & Poor's 500 added 0.1 percent to 1,924.97, setting a record high for a second trading day in a row. But the Nasdaq composite finished 0.1 percent lower at 4,237.20.

In energy markets, benchmark U.S. oil for July delivery was up 2 cents to $102.49 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 24 cents to $102.47 on Monday.

In currencies, the euro rose to $1.3605 from $1.3598. The dollar fell to 102.39 yen from 102.407 yen.

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Source: Associated Press

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