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Asian markets set for modest upswing after gains on Wall Street

New York - On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.38% , while the S&P 500 gained 0.81% .

By Reuters

Published: Wed 20 Jan 2021, 7:31 AM

Investors in Asian markets were poised for gains on Wednesday after Wall Street indexes rose on the back of U.S. Treasury Secretary nominee Janet Yellen’s push for a sizable fiscal relief package in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’ve sort of seen a positivity evident last night in Wall Street already in Asian trade on Tuesday,” said Kyle Rodda, a markets analyst at IG Markets, who noted Asian markets are following U.S. stimulus developments more than anything else.

“The gains are modest,” he added.

Australia’s ASX 200 rose more than 0.5 per cent in early trade Wednesday.

MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe gained 0.03 per cent .

Japan’s Nikkei 225 futures added 0.07 per cent , but Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index futures lost 0.29 per cent .

At Yellen’s confirmation hearing on Tuesday, she said the benefits of a big stimulus package are greater than the expenses of a higher debt burden.

President-elect Joe Biden, who will be sworn into office on Wednesday, last week laid out a $1.9 trillion stimulus package proposal to boost the economy and speed up the distribution of vaccines.

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.38 per cent , while the S&P 500 gained 0.81 per cent . The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite added 1.53 per cent .

The dollar dropped for a second straight session on Tuesday with investors turning their focus to riskier assets.

US treasuries fell after Yellen said during her hearing that 2017 tax cuts for corporations should be rolled back.

Oil prices rose on Tuesday on hopes that Biden’s proposed stimulus will lift economic output, while gold also firmed.

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