Asian Markets Rebound From Trade Fears

A man walks past an electronic stock board showing Japan’s Nikkei 225 index and the index of other countries at a securities firm in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)

Asian stock markets rose Thursday following Wall Street’s decline amid U.S.-Chinese trade tensions, and oil prices recovered some of the previous day’s steep losses.

The Shanghai Composite Index rose 2.3 percent to 2,841.72 and Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 advanced 1.2 percent to 22,206.96. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 1 percent to 28,595.74 and Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 was 0.9 percent higher at 6,274.00. India’s Sensex added 0.8 percent to 36,536.09 and Seoul’s Kospi rose 0.6 percent to 2,294.86. Benchmarks in Taiwan and Southeast Asia also advanced.

China’s government said it will take “firm and forceful measures” if the Trump administration goes ahead with its threat of tariff hikes on an additional $200 billion of Chinese goods. President Donald Trump has threatened to raise duties on almost everything Americans buy from China. Beijing is running out of American goods for retaliatory tariffs due to its lopsided trade balance, which means it might impose other measures.

China’s strong language but lack of detail is “leaving the market on edge,” said Jingyi Pan of IG in a report. With no sign Washington and Beijing are resuming negotiations, “it is of little surprise to find investors pondering the ‘firm and forceful measures’ that China has pledged.”

Companies that sell computer chips, oil, basic materials and heavy machinery dropped after the Trump administration’s tariff threat. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index lost 0.7 percent to 2,774.02. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.9 percent to 24,700.75. The Nasdaq composite fell 0.5 percent to 7,716.61.

Benchmark U.S. crude gained 48 cents to $70.86 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract plunged $3.27 on Wednesday to close at $70.38. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained $1.18 to $75.58 per barrel in London. It lost $5.36 the previous session to $73.40.

The dollar gained to 112.27 yen from Wednesday’s 111.99 yen. The euro edged up to $1.1675 from $1.1673.