Asian markets mostly up on upbeat earnings

Asian markets mostly rose Thursday following upbeat earnings results in the region and the United States, while eurozone fears eased slightly on hopes over the funding of future bailouts.

The first gain for the Dow in four sessions also provided some support but the euro gave up some of the rare recent gains it had made in New York currency trade.

Tokyo's Nikkei index closed 0.92 percent, or 77.20 points, higher at 8,443.10, as investors sought out cheap buys after the benchmark hit a seven-week low on Wednesday, said Fumiyuki Nakanishi, SMBC Friend Securities' head of investment and research.

Sharp closed up 0.76 percent at 262 yen after recouping losses on a report the consumer electronics firm may cut 15 percent of its workforce.

Olympus jumped 9.63 percent to 1,400 yen after medical equipment maker Terumo said it offered to make a $640-million capital injection in the scandal-hit firm and merge under a holding company.

Brokerage giant Nomura Holdings rose 5.71 percent to 259 yen after media reports that chief executive Kenichi Watanabe would step down over an insider trading scandal.

Nomura said after the market close that its net profit dived 89.4 percent year-on-year to 1.89 billion yen in the three months to June as commission income fell in retail business while net gain on trading shrank.

Canon plunged 7.76 percent to 2,470 yen after the export-dependent cameras and office equipment maker lowered its profit outlook for 2012.

Meanwhile, the Seoul market was up 0.74 percent, or 13.16 points, at 1,782.47, and Sydney gained 0.58 percent, or 23.8 points, to 4,147.7.

Hong Kong ended flat, edging up 0.08 percent, or 15.46 points, to 18,892.79, while Shanghai eased 0.48 percent, or 10.15 points, to 2,126.00.

Regional investors followed the lead from the Dow and most European markets after Spanish borrowing costs fell slightly after hitting record highs on the back of fears Madrid will ask for a bailout.

The yield on Madrid's 10-year bonds eased to a still-high 7.376 percent after soaring to as much as 7.621 percent at one point.

Dealers were given some comfort after Austrian central bank chief Ewald Nowotny, a member of the European Central Bank governing council, said the soon-to-be launched European Stability Mechanism rescue fund might be granted a banking licence.

That would allow the fund to exchange bonds for ECB cash, bolstering its capacity without governments having to contribute additional funds.

Traders have been growing increasingly concerned that a possible rescue for Spain could cost hundreds of billions of dollars, which leaves very little in the pot to help other troubled economies.

"Giving the ESM a banking licence would allow it to expand its firepower," CMC Markets chief market strategist Michael McCarthy in Australia told Dow Jones Newswires.

"The sell-off this week was related to the failure of the eurozone to make any improvement in the structural process of directly aiding Spanish banks."

But there was still plenty of gloom in Europe. In Germany a survey showed business confidence dropped for the third month in a row in July while Britain said its economy shrank a worse than expected 0.7 percent in April-June deepening the country's double-dip recession.

On Japan's Nikkei, videogame maker Nintendo posted healthy gains of 3.19 percent after saying later Wednesday that its first-quarter losses were much lower than at the same time last year.

And industrial robotics firm Fanuc surged 5.32 percent after saying earnings for the April-June period were better than expected.

The earnings figures were followed by strong results on Wall Street from construction giant Caterpillar and airplane maker Boeing, which helped the Dow advance 0.47 percent on Wednesday.

In Sydney flagship carrier Qantas jumped 9.6 percent after it said it was in talks with Emirates and other airlines about a possible tie up to save its struggling international arm.

On currency markets the euro bought $1.2145 and 94.98 yen in afternoon Asian trade, compared with $1.2153 and 95.04 yen late Wednesday in New York, where it had made big gains from the previous session. The dollar was at 78.18 yen from 78.19 yen.

Oil prices were down. New York's main contract, light sweet crude for delivery in September, dipped 34 cents to $88.63 a barrel in the afternoon while Brent North Sea crude for September delivery fell 38 cents to $104.00.

Gold was at $1,604.23 at 0850 GMT from $1,592.40 late Wednesday.

In other markets:

-- Taipei was down 0.12 percent, or 8.44 points, at 6,970.69.

Hon Hai Precision lost 1.71 percent to Tw$80.5 and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co rose 2.28 percent to Tw$76.3.

-- Manila closed 0.18 percent, or 9.24 points, lower at 5,152.56.

Philippine Long Distance Telephone slipped 0.22 percent to 2,674 pesos but Ayala Corp. 0 rose 0.39 percent to 412.60 pesos.

-- Wellington rose 0.77 percent, or 26.77 points, to 3,485.74.

Fletcher Building was up 2.3 percent at NZ$5.90, Air New Zealand gained 0.6 percent to close at NZ$0.90 and Telecom Corp lifted 0.2 percent to NZ$2.57.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • North Korea fires missiles in anger at South-US military drills
    North Korea fires missiles in anger at South-US military drills

    North Korea fired two missiles into the sea on Monday and vowed "merciless" retaliation as the US and South Korea kicked off joint military drills denounced by Pyongyang as recklessly confrontational. The annual exercises always trigger a surge in military tensions and warlike rhetoric on the divided peninsula, and analysts saw the North's missile tests as a prelude to a concerted campaign of sabre rattling. "And if there is a particularly sharp escalation, we could see the North …

  • Couple married 67 years holds hands in final hours together
    Couple married 67 years holds hands in final hours together

    FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — After spending 67 years together as devoted husband and wife, there was no question how Floyd and Violet Hartwig would end their lives — together. …

  • Hijacked Indonesian vessel found in Davao
    Hijacked Indonesian vessel found in Davao

    An Indonesian cargo vessel that was hijacked a month ago in North Sulawesi, Indonesia has been found stuck in the waters off Mati, Davao Oriental, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) reported yesterday. PCG spokesperson Armand Balilo said the PCG- Southeastern Mindanao district was informed on Feb. 23 that the M/T Rehoboth was found aground off Barangay Cabuaya. Four personnel from the local PCG district office were sent to verify the report. The vessel was reportedly hijacked by …

  • Militants want US Marines pulled out of Negros
    Militants want US Marines pulled out of Negros

    The militant group Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) is calling for the pullout of US Marines who arrived in Sagay City, Negros Occidental last Wednesday to train Special Action Force (SAF) commandos and members of the allied forces. The SAF commandos and the allied forces will secure the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) ministerial meeting in this city. Bayan-Negros secretary general Christian Tuayon said the US troops might violate the human rights of activists, especially those …

  • Military steps up offensive vs BIFF, Abu Sayyaf
    Military steps up offensive vs BIFF, Abu Sayyaf

    Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang Jr. has ordered the sustained campaign against the Abu Sayyaf and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) following the successive offensives against the armed groups last week. A total of 24 Abu Sayyaf bandits and two soldiers were killed in recent clashes in Sulu last week. The Joint Task Group Sulu has received information that Abu Sayyaf leader Radulan Sahiron was wounded during one of the encounters but this is …

  • China subs outnumber US fleet – admiral
    China subs outnumber US fleet – admiral

    China is building some “fairly amazing submarines” and now has more diesel- and nuclear-powered vessels than the United States, a top US Navy admiral told US lawmakers on Wednesday, although he said their quality was inferior. Vice Admiral Joseph Mulloy, deputy chief of naval operations for capabilities and resources, told the House Armed Services Committee’s seapower subcommittee that China was also expanding the geographic areas of operation for its submarines, and their length of …

  • Binay backs house arrest for JPE, GMA
    Binay backs house arrest for JPE, GMA

    Vice President Jejomar Binay yesterday supported proposals to put Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile and former President now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal- Arroyo under house arrest. “Government prosecutors are opposing house arrest for… Enrile. Binay issued the statement after the 91-year-old Enrile was rushed to the Makati Medical Center on Thursday due to pneumonia. House arrest for him would be the compassionate thing to do,” he added. …

  • Pacman mega fight tax exemption up to Congress, BIR
    Pacman mega fight tax exemption up to Congress, BIR

    Malacañang is leaving it up to Congress and the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) to consider a proposed special tax exemption for boxing icon Manny Pacquiao in his much-awaited fight with Floyd Mayweather. Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said yesterday it will have to be discussed by Congress because lawmakers are the ones who enact tax exemptions, special or general. Pacquiao has been dogged by unsettled tax obligations with the BIR. …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options