Easing Trade Tensions Brings Higher Asia Markets

Asia stocks closed in positive territory on Wednesday after various news reports pointed to an easing in tensions between the U.S. and China.

The Nikkei 225 reversed the recent series of losses and jumped 453.73 points, or 2.2%, to 21,602.75.

Automakers were among the biggest gainers in Japan, following in the footsteps of their peers in the U.S. after reports emerged that China was moving to cut tariffs on cars. Yamaha Motor surged 4.2%, Mitsubishi Motor jumped 2.9%, while Toyota inched up 2.2%. Nissan, still reeling from a recent scandal involving former Chairman Carlos Ghosn, saw a more moderate gain of nearly 1%.

The Japanese yen traded at 113.47 against the U.S. dollar after yesterday’s 113.37

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index hiked 415.04 points, or 1.6%, to 26,186.71

Korean markets also picked up, as shares of major South Korean automakers also jumped: Hyundai Motor surged 6.3% and Kia Motors gained 3%.

The Australian dollar inched up to $0.7209 U.S. after yesterday’s 0.7206.

CHINA

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 gained 10.79 points, or 0.3%, to 3,170.61

The same positive sentiment was seen in Chinese auto stocks, with Shanghai-listed SAIC Motor among the biggest gainers after inching up 1.1%.

Reports emerged in the U.S. overnight that China was moving to cut import tariffs on cars made in the U.S. from 40% to 15%— that news boosted auto stocks stateside and in Asia. News that Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou was granted bail by Canada also added to the positive sentiment.

In other markets

In Taiwan, the Taiex index gained 109.41 points, or 1.1%, to 9,816.45

In Korea, the Kospi index recovered 29.6 points, or 1.4%, at 2,082.57

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index recouped 40.71 points, or 1.3%, to 3,099.99

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 spiked 67.42 points, or 0.8%, to 8,738.36

In Australia, the ASX 200 added 77.82 points, or 1.4%, to 5,653.50