Asian stocks open year’s last trading day cautiously


Agency  :
Asian stocks opened cautiously on Friday, largely continuing an end-of-year rally that has been boosted by investors’ expectations of a US Federal Reserve rate cut as early as March.
Hong Kong and Tokyo opened the last trading session of the year marginally higher, with Japanese bourses clawing back some ground after losing steam to a strengthening yen a day earlier.
Currency markets remained largely flat Friday morning, but the US dollar is set to finish its worst year since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, with investors betting on a Fed rate cut and that other countries might keep rates higher for longer.
Asian stocks are on track for their best year since the pandemic but continue to underperform global peers.
Chinese markets, in particular, have been weighed by concerns regarding the country’s sluggish economic recovery from its long-lasting and strict pandemic lockdowns. Still, there was positive news in the Chinese tech sector on Friday, with Huawei saying it expected 2023 revenue to grow by nine percent, despite facing continuing US sanctions.
On Thursday, the Dow eked out a fresh record, while the S&P 500 fell a bit short of an all-time high despite finishing the day with modest gains.