Asia Mostly Rises as Korea Growth Slows

Asia Pacific shares mostly rose in the afternoon, as latest figures showed that South Korea’s economy continued to slow. Investors, meanwhile, look ahead to the European Central Bank meeting on Thursday.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 index jumped 125.22 points, or 0.6%, to 22,750.60.

The Japanese yen traded at 108.68, strengthening from 108.72 seen earlier.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index hiked 231.22 points, or 0.9%, to 26,797.95

Korean markets moved tentatively up. Chip giant SK Hynix posted third-quarter operating profit of 473 billion won ($405 million U.S.) — a 93% plunge as compared to the previous year’s quarter, as memory chip prices continue to fall. That, however, beat estimates of 418 billion won.

Its shares closed higher by 3%.

Hyundai Motor also reported third-quarter earnings. Its net profit rose 59% to 427 billion won ($364.8 million U.S.) — widely missing estimates of $684 billion. Its shares rose 0.8% by the close.

The country also reported its gross domestic product numbers on Thursday. South Korea’s economy slowed in the third quarter, growing at 0.4%, according to preliminary estimates by its central bank.

South Korea’s economy has been slowing this year, hit by the U.S.-China trade war. In October, it cut its interest rate for the second time in three months to prop up growth.

In Australia, stocks gained, with Santos jumping 2.3% and Woodside Petroleum up 2.4%. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.6847, following a low of $0.6834 seen earlier.

In other markets

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 eased back 0.41 points to 3,870.67

In Taiwan, the Taiex grew 80.47 points, or 0.7%, to 11,320.14

In Korea, the Kospi added 5.04 points, or 0.2%, to 2,085.66

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index spiked 24.59 points, or 0.8%, to 3,168.87

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 gave back 22.27 points, or 0.2%, to 10,831.52

In Australia, the ASX 200 gained 20.56 points, or 0.3%, to 6,693.65