| Tokyo gains, Hong Kong slumps |
Japan stocks closed slightly higher on Wednesday, after a record close for the S&P 500 overnight. Hong Kong shares finished lower, hit by afternoon session losses as investors took profit on recent outperformers and sold shares in companies with weak earnings.
The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo regained 13.60 points, or 0.1%, to 15,534.82. Meanwhile, the yen weakened, trading at ¥104.145 from ¥104.104 a day ago.
The Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong slumped 155.75 points, or 0.6%, to 24,918.75.
In Japan, tech stocks notched broad gains, as semiconductor firm Renesas Electronics Corp. advanced 2.3%, electronics giant Hitachi, Ltd. rose 1.2%, Internet and telecoms conglomerate SoftBank Corp. improved by 1.1%, and electronics manufacturer Panasonic Corp. zoomed 0.9% higher.
Financial stocks also gained, with investment bank Nomura Holdings, Inc. up 1.6%, life insurer Dai-Ichi Life Insurance Company, Ltd. adding 1.4%, and brokerage firm Daiwai Securities Group Inc. higher by 1%. Among other market movers, oil explorer Inpex Corporation tacked on 1.6%, and department store operator J.Front Retailing Co., Ltd. snagged a 1% gain.
In Hong Kong, Asia insurance giant AIA Group, which reached a record high on Monday, lost 1.2%. Sinopec Corp was pulled down a further 1.3% from its 6-1/2-year high also hit on Monday.
Guangzhou Automobile Group sank 5.7% after its first-half earnings report on Tuesday failed to show positive growth prospects for the company. That was the same with Want Want China, which slid 2.1% to a two-month low.
China Oilfield Services was a key outperformer, jumping 8.5% to a six-month high. The company posted a 39% rise in first-half profit late on Tuesday.
In other markets;
The Shanghai CSI 300 index regained 3.50 points, or 0.2%, to 2,327.60
In Singapore, the Straits Times STI Index recovered 18.44 points, or 0.6%, to 3,341.46
In Korea, the Kospi index added 6.88 points, or 0.3%, to 2,074.93
The Taiex Index in Taiwan spiked 91.63 points, or 1%, to 9,485.59
In New Zealand, the NZX 50 hiked 48.07 points, or 0.9%, to 5,243.70
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 gained 13.56 points, or 0.2%, to 5,651.18.