Asian shares up after China growth data, Wall St rally

PUBLISHED : Monday, 15 July, 2013, 11:41am
UPDATED : Monday, 15 July, 2013, 11:41am


Asian markets rose on Monday after China released data showing the economy grew in line with expectations in the April-June quarter.

While the news out of Beijing pointed to a further weakening in the economy, it met forecasts and added to broadly upbeat sentiment that was helped by another record-breaking finish on Wall Street.

Hong Kong rose 0.45 per cent and Shanghai added 1.22 per cent, while Sydney -- where a number of listed companies rely on Chinese trade -- climbed 0.25 per cent. Seoul put on 0.27 per cent.

Tokyo was closed for a public holiday.

Beijing said gross domestic product expanded 7.5 per cent in the second quarter, a second straight slowdown.

First quarter growth came in at 7.7 per cent, from the 7.9 per cent in the last three months of last year.

The figure matched the median forecast in a survey of 10 economists by AFP. Growth in the first six months of the year came in at 7.6 per cent, the National Bureau of Statistics said.

Capital Securities analyst Amy Lin told Dow Jones Newswires: “Investors have taken into account slower growth, and given the in-line 2Q number, they don’t see any point changing positions for now.”

Traders have grown increasingly concerned about China’s economy, a crucial driver of growth globally, as a slew of data has pointed to continuing weakness.

Wall Street again provided a positive lead after the Dow and S&P 500 finished at record highs for a second successive session, thanks to better-than-expected earnings reports from banking titans JP Morgan and Wells Fargo.

On forex markets the dollar held firm after edging up slightly in New York on Friday.

In early Asian trade it bought 99.23 yen, compared with 99.29 yen in New York, while the euro sat at US$1.3069 from US$1.3067. The single currency was also at 129.65 yen, from 129.74 yen.

The greenback slipped towards the end of last week after Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke said the bank’s huge stimulus programme would be kept in place “for the foreseeable future”.

On oil markets New York’s main contract, West Texas Intermediate for delivery in August, fell 38 cents to US$105.57 a barrel, while Brent North Sea crude for August shed 15 cents to US$108.66.

Gold fetched US$1,290.40 per ounce at 0240 GMT, compared with US$1,276.00 late Friday.