Asian Markets Trade Mostly Higher

Asian stock markets are trading mostly higher on Friday, tracking a broadly positive finish on Wall Street overnight, driven by technology stocks, which mirrored their peers on Nasdaq, reacting to upbeat earnings from top companies. Meanwhile, traders remained cautious amid Covid-19 lockdowns in China, looming interest rate hikes and the ongoing war in Ukraine. Asian markets ended mostly higher on Thursday.

The Australian stock market is significantly higher on Friday, recouping some of the losses in the previous session, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 moving above the 7,400 level, tracking a broadly positive finish overnight from Wall Street, with gains in gold miners, energy, financial and technology stocks.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is gaining 57.10 points or 0.78 percent to 7,414.00, after touching a high of 7,426.90 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is up 62.10 points or 0.81 percent to 7,704.50. Australian markets ended sharply higher on Thursday.

Among major miners, Rio Tinto and BHP Group are flat, while Fortescue Metals is edging up 0.5 percent, OZ Minerals is edging down 0.4 percent and Mineral Resources is gaining more than 1 percent.

Oil stocks are mostly higher. Woodside Petroleum and Santos are gaining more than 1 percent each, while Origin Energy is adding more than 2 percent. Beach energy is edging down 0.3 percent.

Among tech stocks, WiseTech Global is gaining more than 3 percent, Zip is soaring almost 8 percent, Afterpay owner Block is edging up 0.3 percent, Xero is up almost 2 percent and Appen is advancing almost 4 percent.

Among the big four banks, Westpac and Commonwealth Bank are edging up 0.4 percent each, while National Australia Bank and ANZ Banking are gaining almost 1 percent each.

Gold miners are strong. Evolution Mining and Newcrest Mining are gaining more than 2 percent each, while Northern Star Resources is adding more than 1 percent, Gold Road Resources is up more than 3 percent and Resolute Mining is soaring almost 11 percent.

In the currency market, the Aussie dollar is trading at $0.712 on Friday.

The Japanese stock market is closed for Showa Day holiday on Friday. Japanese shares closed sharply higher on Thursday.

In the currency market, the U.S. dollar is trading in the higher 130 yen-range on Friday.

Elsewhere in Asia, Taiwan is up 1.1 percent, while New Zealand, China, Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Indonesia are higher by between 0.1 and 0.9 percent each. Hong Kong is bucking the trend and is down 1.0 percent.

On Wall Street, stocks moved sharply higher over the course of the trading day on Thursday after another rollercoaster ride early in the session. The tech-heavy Nasdaq led the rally after ending Wednesday’s trading at its lowest closing level in over a year.

The major averages pulled back off their highs going into the close but held on to strong gains. The Dow jumped 614.46 points or 1.9 percent to 33,916.39, the Nasdaq spiked 382.59 points or 3.1 percent to 12,871.53 and the S&P 500 surged 103.54 points or 2.5 percent to 4,287.50.

The major European markets also showed strong moves to the upside on the day. While the German DAX Index surged by 1.4 percent, the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index and the French CAC 40 Index shot up by 1.1 percent and 1 percent, respectively.

Crude oil prices climbed higher Thursday amid concerns over supply due to the possible impact of sanctions on Russia’s crude oil production. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for June ended higher by $3.34 or 3.3 percent at $105.36 a barrel.

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