Asian stock markets were mixed on Friday, though the regional share gauge still capped its strongest week since early last months, following a series of steps by China shifting to stimulus mode.
The weighted index on the Taiwan Stock Exchange closed up 65.17 points, or 0.59 percent, at the day’s high of 11,075.78, up 1.3 percent from last week’s 10,932.11.
Hong Hong stocks ended flat, as expectations of more stimulus from Beijing offset worries over a China economic slowdown as trade frictions with the US intensify.
The Hang Seng index rose 0.1 percent to 28,804.28, while the China Enterprises Index gained 0.2 percent to 11,047.42 points.
China plans to put more money into infrastructure projects and ease borrowing curbs on local governments to help soften the blow to the economy from the US-China trade war, policy sources told Reuters.
Profit growth for China’s industrial firms last month eased from the previous month, as factory production slowed.
The sub-index of the Hang Seng tracking energy shares rose 1 percent while the IT sector rose 0.15 percent, the financial sector was 0.05 percent higher and property sector rose 0.45 percent.
As of the previous trading session, the Hang Seng index was down 3.8 percent this year, while China’s H-share index was down 5.9 percent.
As of the previous close, the Hang Seng has declined 0.6 percent this month.
Central bank policy is back at the forefront of market discussions.
China’s onshore currency capped a sixth straight week of declines as the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) continues to embrace faster liquidity and credit growth.
The PBOC told some banks this week that a specific capital requirement would be eased to support lending, Bloomberg News reported.
Intensifying speculation about tweaks to the Bank of Japan’s (BOJ) stimulus program saw 10-year yields briefly trading above 0.1 percent — against the BOJ target of about zero — before slipping as the central bank unleashed another unlimited bond-purchase offering.
Japanese equities climbed for a fourth day on Friday, shrugging off a decline in Nomura Holdings Inc following a profit slide. TOPIX rose 0.6 percent and Nikkei closed up 0.56 percent.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.75 percent to 168.78, up 1.73 percent from last week’s 165.90.
South Korea’s KOSPI rose 0.2 percent.
Australia’s S&P/ASX200 Index gained 0.9 percent.
Additional reporting by CNA and staff writer
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