Asia Markets: Asian markets continue end-of-the-week rally

Asian stock markets largely extended their gains in early Friday trading, as Thursday’s global rebound continued.

Japan’s Nikkei NIK, +2.09%   was faring the best, up 1.3%, handily pushing back above its 200-day moving average, as the yen hit fresh six-month lows against the dollar USDJPY, +0.10%   . Gains were being led by defensive names, such as beverage maker Yakult Honsha 2267, +4.51%  , up 4.3%. Uniqlo parent Fast Retailing 9983, +7.76%   surged more than 6% after posting positive earnings. But factory-automation stocks eased, highlighted by Yaskawa Electric 6506, -2.84%   giving up an early 3.7% gain following strong quarterly results to trade 4% lower.

Read: What you need to know about the dollar-yen 6-month low

Hong Kong stocks HSI, +0.58%   also extended Thursday’s gains, with the benchmark up 0.6% early on. Tech was continuing to rebound, with Sunny Optical 2382, +2.44%   climbing a further 3% and index heavyweight Tencent 0700, +0.63%   advancing 1%. Financials were also higher, with Ping An Insurance 2318, +0.63%  and China Construction Bank 0939, +0.43%   also rising nearly 1%.

One exception was Australia, where early gains for the S&P/ASX 200 XJO, -0.07%   didn’t last as financials then slid 0.7% following their rebound of the past month-plus. The only other benchmark lower was the Shanghai Composite SHCOMP, -0.12%  , down 0.4% after two days of gains topping 2%. Still, the index is about to have its first winning week in two months, snapping its longest skid in 6½ years.

South Korea’s Kospi SEU, +1.02%   rose, led by tech and automaker stocks. Samsung 005930, +1.43%   was up 1% and Hyundai 005380, +0.41%   was up 0.4%. Markets in Taiwan Y9999, +0.89%  , Singapore STI, +0.26%  , Malaysia FBMKLCI, +0.75%   and New Zealand NZ50GR, +0.32%   were all logging gains.

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