Asia Mostly Gains on Trade News

Stocks in Asia mostly advanced on the first trading day of November amid renewed concerns over the potential for a long-term trade deal between China and the U.S.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 index slumped 76.27 points, or 0.3%, to begin November at 22,927.04

Shares of gaming firm Nintendo surged 7.5%, after the company announced on Thursday a second-quarter profit that exceeded expectations.

The Japanese yen, often seen as a safe-haven currency in times of market uncertainty, traded at 107.98 against the dollar after strengthening from levels above 108.5 in the previous session.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index jumped 194.04 points, or 0.7%, to 27,100.76

In Hong Kong the Hang Seng index rose 0.6%, as of its final hour of trading, as shares of ESR Cayman jumped in the company’s public debut on Friday. The shares had surged 7% in the morning.

The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.6906 after falling from levels above $0.692 seen yesterday.

CHINA

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 gathered 65.64 points, or 1.7%, to 3,952.39

A private survey of factory activity in China showed manufacturing activity in the country expanded more than expected in October. The Caixin/Markit Purchasing Managers’s Index (PMI) for the manufacturing sector came in at 51.7, above expectations of 51.0 by analysts in a Reuters poll. The 50 level in PMI readings separates expansion from contraction.

A day before, official data showed manufacturing activity in China shrank for the sixth straight month in October. The official PMI survey typically polls a large proportion of big businesses and state-owned enterprises. The Caixin indicator features a bigger mix of small- and medium-sized companies.

Investors watched for developments in U.S.-China trade amid renewed jitters after Bloomberg News reported Thursday, citing sources, that Chinese officials have been casting doubt over the possibility of a long-term trade deal with the U.S. The report added Chinese officials are concerned about U.S. President Donald Trump’s "impulsive nature" and the risk of him backing out of any kind of deal.

In other markets

In Taiwan, the Taiex recovered 16.73 points, or 0.8%, to 11,339.53

In Korea, the Kospi picked up 40.82 points, or 0.4%, to 2,100.20

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index lost 0.45 points to 3,229.43

In Australia, the ASX 200 gained 5.72 points, or 0.1%, to 6,669.10

In New Zealand, the NZX dipped 26.12 points, or 0.2%, to 10,761.69