Asia stocks climbed as Chinese shares surged and the yen's slide to seven-year low versus the dollar spurred gains in Japanese equities. Gold slipped while oil rose.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index added 0.6 percent by 3:29 p.m. in Tokyo, as Japan’s Topix index rose 0.8 percent to the highest close since December 2007. The Shanghai Composite Index jumped 4.1 percent. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures fluctuated with the greenback at 119.91 yen and near a two-year high against the euro before the European Central Bank decides policy. Gold lost 0.2 percent. Australian bonds rallied, while oil in New York rose 0.8 percent.
Global bond yields are holding near historic lows before the ECB decision today amid speculation policy makers are moving closer to buying government debt to combat deflation. Investors are awaiting U.S. payroll reports tomorrow after private data yesterday showed steady hiring and accelerating services growth. China’s benchmark stock gauge surged 16 percent since Nov. 19 as an interest-rate cut and speculation for further easing drove turnover to record highs.
“We have the back-to-the-future theme” in markets now, said Sean Darby, chief global equity strategist at Jefferies Hong Kong Ltd. “We have the sort of environment we had in the late 1990s, which tends to point us to a pretty good period in equities. Low bond yields, no inflation, commodity prices well behaved, and equities did quite well during that period”.