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Korea Gains as Central Bank Holds Rate

South Korea stock markets were up on Thursday after the country’s central bank held lending rates for the seventh straight time, while China and Hong Kong equities fell as manufacturing activity in China contracted further.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 index jumped 165.67 points, or 0.5%, to 33,321.22, ending three straight days of losses.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng advanced 49.44 points, or 0.3%, to 17,042.88

South Korea’s central bank has held its benchmark policy rate at 3.5%, saying that although inflation in the country has been elevated, its is still projected to slow down.

South Korea’s industrial output numbers surprised the market, registering a 3.5% fall compared to expectations of a 0.5% rise from economists polled by Reuters. The country will also see its central bank announce its rate decision today.


In Shanghai, the CSI 300 regained 7.89 points, or 0.2%, to 3,496.20.

China’s factory activity shrank for a second straight month in November, while non-manufacturing activity hit yet another new low for the year.

In other markets

In Singapore, the Straits Times Index slid 11.71 points or 0.4%, to 3,072.99.

In Taiwan, the Taiex grew 63.29 points, on 0.4%, to 17,433.85.

In Korea, the Kospi index recovered 15.48 points, or 0.6%, to 2,535.29.

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 vaulted 94.26 points, or 0.8%, to 11,330.20.

In Australia, the ASX 200 climbed 51.99 points, or 0.7%, to 7,087.33.