Asian shares rise after Wall Street rally

Stocks rose on Monday in Asia after last week’s strong close on Wall Street snapped a three-week losing streak.

Many regional markets were closed for holidays, while Tokyo and Sydney advanced. Oil prices fell.

Investors are watching US inflation data and Chinese economic data this week.

The US Labor Department will release its consumer price report for August on Tuesday and a wholesale price report on Wednesday. On Thursday, Wall Street will get an update on retail sales for August.

Coronavirus cases continue to cast a shadow over China, where some 65 million Chinese have been under lockdown since last week, despite just 1,248 new cases of domestic transmission, mostly asymptomatic, reported on Sunday.

“Overall, the picture of lower for longer growth remains the theme for China,” IG’s Yeap Jun Rong said in a comment.

Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 gained 1.2% to 28,546.09 and Sydney’s S&P/ASX 200 rose 1.2% to 6,973.60. Taiwan’s benchmark gained 1.6%. Markets in Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seoul remained closed for public holidays.

On Friday, the S&P 500 closed 1.5 percent higher at 4,067.36, its third straight gain and ended up 3.7 percent for the week. That makes it the benchmark’s best week since July.

Big gains for technology companies pushed the Nasdaq composite up 2.1 percent to 12,112.31. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.2% to 32,151.71. Both indices also posted their first weekly gain in four weeks.

Shares of smaller companies also posted solid gains. The Russell 2000 index jumped 1.9% to 1,882.85.

Those gains capped a holiday-shortened week on Wall Street, during which the market regained some of the ground it lost after a mid-August slump that wiped out big gains from a mid-summer rally.

All 11 industrial sectors in the benchmark S&P 500 rose, although home goods and utilities makers, typically considered less risky investments, lagged the market. U.S. crude oil prices rose 3.9%, helping energy stocks rise. Exxon Mobil rose 1.7%.

The Federal Reserve is in the spotlight as investors try to figure out whether the U.S. central bank’s plan to reduce the hottest inflation in four decades will work or potentially send an already slowing economy into recession.

Stocks spent July and part of August gaining ground on hopes the Fed would ease interest rate hikes, but have tumbled in recent weeks as it became clear the central bank remained determined to raise rates.

The central bank has already raised interest rates four times this year and markets expect it to deliver another whopping three-quarters of a percentage point increase at its next meeting in two weeks. Fed officials, including Chairman Jerome Powell, all reaffirmed the central bank’s determination to raise interest rates until inflation is under control.

In other trading Monday, benchmark U.S. crude lost $1.34 to $85.45 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It jumped $3.25 to $86.79 a barrel on Friday.

Brent crude, the benchmark for international trade, fell $1.30 to $91.54 a barrel.

The dollar rose to 143.02 Japanese yen from 142.26 yen. The euro fell to $1.0080 from $1.0093.

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