With a number of Southeast Asian markets closed for a holiday, equities in the rest of the Asia-Pacific region generally continued their winning ways in early trading Wednesday. But S&P 500 futures ESU8, -0.20% were down 0.2% in the wake of the fresh political storm encircling President Donald Trump with Paul Manafort’s conviction and Michael Cohen’s guilty pleas.
Chinese stocks opened slightly lower after two days of 1%-plus gains, reversing some of last week’s sharp declines. The Shanghai Composite SHCOMP, -0.52% was off 0.4%, while the Shenzhen Composite 399106, -0.76% was down 0.6%. Consumer names were modestly underperforming in initial trading while financials were little changed.
Hong Kong stocks initially joined those on the mainland in starting lower, but the Hang Seng HSI, +0.47% rallied into positive territory, and was last up 0.5%. Ping An 1833, +4.16% surged 4%, while HSBC 0005, -0.43% and China Mobile 0941, -1.08% fell.
Australia’s benchmark XJO, -0.28% added to Tuesday’s underperformance, pressured further by fresh 1% declines in financials and materials. Stocks were up again in New Zealand, though, with the NZX 50 NZ50GR, +0.33% on pace for another record closing high.
South Korea’s Kospi SEU, +0.34% gained 0.3%, as Samsung 005930, +2.46% rose more than 2%. Taiwan’s Taiex Y9999, +0.18% rose slightly. Indexes in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia were closed for holidays.
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