SYDNEY, Australia – Stock markets in Asia shrugged off losses on Wall Street overnight, and gained ground in buoyant trading on Tuesday.
China’s securities regulator stepped in to contain its soggy markets by announcing it would encourage share buybacks and mergers and acquisitions by listed companies, and would expand market liquidity.
Investors were encouraged. The Shanghai Composite advanced, adding 25.08 points or 0.99% to 2,567.18.
The Australian All Ordinaries finished strongly, gaining 74.10 points or 1.27% to 5,887.90.
The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo closed 307.49 points or 1.45% higher at 21,457.29.
“At this point, nobody can say the equity market is bottoming out. Global investor sentiment remains shaky,” Yasuo Sakuma, chief investment officer at Libra Investments in Tokyo was quoted by Reuters as saying.
“The probability of global stocks turning to a bear market is increasing,” Masanari Takada, cross-assets strategist at Nomura Securities told Reuters.
“While some investors who look at fundamentals buy stocks on dips, there are other players who keep selling automatically in response to heightened volatility. At times like this, buyers can easily be overwhelmed by negative headlines on tariffs, etc.”
The U.S. dollar was a tad weaker in Asia compared to its New York close, except against the Trans-Tasman currencies.
In early European trading Tuesday, the euro was quoted at 1.1375. The British pound dipped to 1.2795, while the Japanese yen edged lower to 112.69.
The Swiss franc was changing hands at 1.0018, and the Canadian dollar at 1.3115.
The Australian dollar gained ground to 0.7090, while the New Zealand dollar was also firmer at 0.6548.
Wall Street sold off overnight, with major falls in leading technology stocks.
Google parent Alphabet, Netflix and Amazon all recorded sharp losses. This despite sharp gains by Red Hat, up 50% at one stage, which accepted an offer to be bought out by IBM, in a deal worth $34 billion.
Amazon was the biggest loser among the tech majors, shedding 6.3% of its value. Netflix lost 5%, while Alphabet slipped 4.5%. Microsoft was down 2.9%.
“These growth stocks just got so over-valued it is only natural to see some air come out of that balloon. That could continue for a while,” Stephen Massocca, senior vice president at Wedbush Securities in San Francisco told Reuters Monday.
“But in terms of the rest of the market that doesn’t have those kinds of extreme valuations, I think we are probably pretty close to the end of the decline,” he said.
One of the biggest movers in the industrials sector was Boeing which dropped 6.6% after a Boeing airliner crashed Monday off the Indonesian coast, killing all 189 people on board.
The volatility of the past week gave every indication it is likely to continue into this week, particularly with the U.S. midterm elections looming.
“Probably the most pervasive headwind is concern about midterm elections,” Kristina Hooper, chief global market strategist at Invesco was quoted by Reuters as saying. “That is weighing down stocks, particularly technology as there is greater concern about regulation.”
At the close of trading Monday, the Dow Jones industrials were down 245.05 points or 0.99% at 24,443.26.
The Standard and Poor’s 500 dropped 17.43 points or 0.66% to 2,641.26.
The Nasdaq Composite fared worst of all, losing 116.92 points or 1.63% to 7,050.29.