Asian markets inch forward amid U.S.-China friction

Asian stocks were mostly higher Friday after Thursday gains on Wall Street, but investors continued to watch for news about U.S.-China trade friction.

“Clouded with much uncertainty, markets will likely remain jittery and may struggle to hold on to the gains,” said Jayden Loh, a Trader at IG in Singapore.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 NIK, +0.82% added 0.8%, and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 XJO, +0.42% gained 0.4%. South Korea’s Kospi SEU, +0.34% rose 0.3%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng HSI, -0.35% gained initially but fell 0.3%, while the Shanghai SHCOMP, +0.03% as also up less than 0.1%.

Tech stocks, which took the brunt of losses Thursday, recovered. Samsung 005930, +1.11% gained 1%, while Tencent 0700, +2.10% bounced nearly 3% and Largan Precision 3008, +2.14% jumped 3.4%.

On Thursday, the S&P 500 index SPX, -1.83% fell 4.11 points, or 0.2%, to 2,695.95. The benchmark index had been down as much as 2.9%. The Dow DJIA, -1.82% dropped 79.40 points, or 0.3%, to 24,947.67. The average briefly slumped as much as 784 points. The technology-heavy Nasdaq composite COMP, -2.28% reversed an early loss to finish with a gain, adding 29.83 points, or 0.4%, to 7,188.26.

U.S. benchmark crude CLF9, +4.31% and Brent crude LCOG9, +4.73% , used to price international oils, fell during Asian trading hours before later rebounding slightly.

After falling earlier, the dollar USDJPY, +0.02% was at 112.82 yen from 112.80 yen late Thursday.



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