Asian stocks rally on US plans to boost banks
Asian stocks rallied on speculation the US Government will increase its stake in Citigroup, reducing the risk that bank failures will deepen the global recession.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index added 475.93, or 3.8 per cent, to close at 13,175.10. The Hang Seng China Enterprise Index, which tracks so-called H-shares, rose 3.4 per cent to 7,307.01. Japan's Nikkei 225 Stock Average lost 0.5 per cent to 7,376.16 as the bankruptcy of lender SFCG Corp stoked concern more companies will fail.
China's stock market rose in heavy trade as shares in smaller banks surged in response to a local media report China Development Bank might buy all or part of Shenzhen Development Bank.
The Shanghai Composite Index closed the day up 1.96 per cent at 2,305.777 points.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index gained 1.2 per cent to 76.97 in Tokyo, having earlier fallen 1.1 per cent. The gauge lost 14 per cent this year as the worsening economic slowdown hurt corporate profits. Most key Asian indexes rose, led by South Korea's Kospi Index, which climbed 3.2 per cent.
The MSCI Asia Pacific's finance gauge is the worst performer of the broader index's 10 industry measures this year as losses from the financial crisis swelled.
Hang Seng Ban climbed 4.1 per cent to HK$85.35. HSBC Holdings, which controls Hang Seng Bank, added 1.3 per cent to HK$55.50. KB Financial Group, which controls South Korea's largest lender, rose four per cent to 28,450 won.
South Korea's Samsung Electronics rose 3.7 per cent to 485,000 won. South Korea is prepared to support its currency and add to a bank recapitalisation fund should the economic slump worsen. China's Poly Real Estate Group jumped six per cent to 20.01 yuan as the country moved to widen stimulus measures. Toshiba slumped 6.5 per cent to 215 yen after reports that the company is considering raising funds to strengthen its finances.
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