Asian Markets Jump On Vaccine, Hopes for US Aid; Gains capped by China data

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Asian markets advanced on Monday to their highest in two and a half years, buoyed by hopes for a US financial package and expectations for a coronavirus vaccine by the end of this year, despite weaker than expected Chinese data. Capped gains.

Image from the file: A man wearing a protective face mask after the outbreak of the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) passes through a screen showing global market indices outside a brokerage firm in Tokyo, Japan, March 17, 2020. REUTERS / Issa Kato

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index is widest outside of Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS It rose 0.6% for a second straight day of gains, slightly lower after third-quarter GDP data from China.

The index has risen in eight of the past 10 sessions amid a spike in risky assets supported by hopes for a coronavirus vaccine and expectations for the so-called “blue wave”, which will see Democrats win the November elections.

Chinese stocks started higher despite the leading stock index .CSI300 Trim gains after China’s GDP data fell below expectations, although separate monthly indicators indicated expansion in economic activity.

China’s GDP grew 4.9% in the July-September period compared to the previous year, which was slower than the average forecast of 5.2%.

Monthly indicators beat expectations – industrial output accelerated 6.9% in September from a year earlier, when analysts were looking for gains of 5.8% from a 5.6% rise in August. Retail sales increased 3.3% last month compared to the previous year, against expectations of 1.8% growth.

“The recovery in third-quarter GDP was less strong than expected, but remained fine at 4.9% year-over-year.” Francis Cheung, head of macro strategy for Asia at Westpac in Singapore, said, “September data beat expectations, indicating a pick-up of momentum towards The last part of the third quarter. “

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“The recovery in momentum has been broad, which bodes well for the fourth quarter forecast.”

Japan’s Nikkei index .N225 The Australia Gauge Index .AXJO Both increased 1.1%.

Boosting Sentiment, Pharmaceutical Company Pfizer Inc. PFE.N On Friday, it said it may be ready for a coronavirus vaccine in the United States by the end of this year.

E-Mini futures contract for the S&P 500 SC1 A 0.6% jump in Asian trade after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Sunday she was optimistic that legislation on a wide-ranging coronavirus relief package could be passed before the election.

But with her negotiating partner, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, in the Middle East through Tuesday, such a timeframe appears overly optimistic, analysts said.

Investors are also concerned about the rise in coronavirus cases to help limit the spread of the disease.

Global coronavirus cases rose by more than 400,000 for the first time late Friday evening, a record increase in one day as most of Europe imposes new restrictions to curb the outbreak.

Later in the week, key risk events include the Reserve Bank of Australia meeting minutes, the final US presidential debate and global manufacturing indicators.

Currencies have been muted with the US dollar, which is often seen as a safe haven asset. = US dollars Fixed at 93.696 against a basket of six major currencies. [USD/]

euro EUR = Slightly weaker at $ 1.1712.

The British pound was slightly higher although it was still near its lowest level in two weeks after British Prime Minister Boris Johnson asked companies to prepare for a no-deal Brexit in case negotiations with the European Union failed to reach a free trade agreement.

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Economists from ANZ said: “Trade talks between the EU and the UK tend to collapse.”

UK Prime Minister Johnson said the UK needs to prepare for outcomes without an agreement, as the two sides cannot agree on a Canada-style free trade agreement. Talks will resume in London on Monday, but without the political will to change the ground, negotiators cannot achieve much.

In commodities, Brent crude oil futures LCOc1 Falling 14 cents to $ 42.79 a barrel, U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures tumbled. CLC1 And it fell 14 cents to 40.74 dollars a barrel.

Spot gold XAU = The shade was stronger at $ 1900.8 an ounce.

Edited by Sam Holmes and Jerry Doyle

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