Asian stock markets closed without a single sign on Thursday, 5. On the Tokyo Stock Exchange, there was a rise amid the balance sheet season, but Shanghai retreated, on a day of weakness for petrochemicals and mining companies and with the risks of covid-19 again on the radar.
In Japan, the Nikkei index rose 0.52% to 27,728.12 points in Tokyo. Shipping companies and insurance roles were among the highlights, with Nippon Yusen up nearly 13% and Mitsui OSK Lines up 6.7%, while Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha gained 6.6%. Nintendo rose 1.75% and Shiseido, 0.06%, after balance sheets.
On the other hand, the Shanghai Stock Exchange closed down 0.31%, at 3,466.55 points, and the Shenzhen, with a smaller range, retreated 0.75%, at 2,560.47 points. In Shanghai, Hengli Petrochemical was down 6.5% and Rongsheng Petro Chemical, 2.9%. Ganfeng Lithium and Zijin Mining yielded 2.9% and 2.4%, respectively, after gains on Wednesday. Among the standouts, Shenzhen Kangtai Biological Products soared 14% after news it had made progress in developing a vaccine against the delta variant of covid-19.
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index was down 0.84% to 26,204.69 points. The index has fluctuated within a range over the past few weeks, with investors on the lookout for possible new regulatory moves from China on the tech and gaming sector, as well as the pandemic and its effects. Alibaba Health was down 6.2% and Tencent, 3.9%.
On the Seoul Stock Exchange, the Kospi index dropped 0.13%, at 3,276.13 points, after three consecutive trading sessions of gains. Retail and travel stocks declined amid fears over covid-19 after South Korea again approached its record for daily reported cases of the virus. In Taiwan, the Taiex index lost 0.12% to 17,603.12 points.
In Oceania, in Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 index finished up 0.11%, at 7,779.60 points, enough to renew a historic closing record. Stocks in the financial, healthcare and consumer sectors drove the positive movement. (With information from Dow Jones Newswires).
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