TOKYO (AP) — Shares were mostly higher in Asia on Friday after the Standard & Poor’s 500 index logged an eighth straight day of gains. Encouraging reports on the U.S. economy and corporate profits helped the index match its longest winning streak since July 2013.
KEEPING SCORE: Japan’s Nikkei 225 index climbed 0.3 percent to 20,685.86 and the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong advanced 0.3 percent to 28,465.07. Australia’s S&P ASX/200 surged 1.0 percent to 5,710.70 and India’s Sensex jumped 0.6 percent to 31,782.28. Shares in Southeast Asia and Taiwan also were higher. Regional trading was subdued with markets in Shanghai and South Korea still closed for holidays.
WALL STREET: The S&P 500 rose 0.6 percent to 2,552.07 and the Dow Jones industrial average gained 0.5 percent to 22,775.39. The Nasdaq composite added 0.8 percent to 6,585.36. All three indexes set fresh record highs. The continued gains have some professional investors a bit nervous, because even the healthiest markets tend to have some sharp sell-offs from time to time.
ANALYST VIEWPOINT: “The optimism continues in the U.S. with record highs seen in consecutive sessions. Coupled with the slight upturn in crude prices, Asian markets are unlikely to miss out on this set of confidence boosters into the end of the week,” Jingyi Pan of IG said in a commentary.
UPBEAT DATA: In the latest good news for the economy Thursday brought a report of a stronger-than-expected rebound in U.S. factory orders during August and a drop in the number of workers applying for unemployment benefits last week.
CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 112.98 Japanese yen from 112.83 yen late Thursday. The euro slipped to $1.1696 from $1.1711 and the British pound dropped $1.3080 from $1.3119.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude slipped 7 cents to $50.72 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It added 81 cents to $50.79 on Thursday. Brent crude, the standard for international oil prices, gained 2 cents to $57.02 per barrel.