Asia-Pacific markets gain after Wall Street recovery

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SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific were set to rise on Friday after a comeback on Wall Street as investors continued to digest the Fed’s plans to fight inflation.

Japan’s Nikkei futures contract in Chicago was at 27,125, while its counterpart in Osaka was at 27,030. The Nikkei 225 closed at 26,888.57 on Thursday.

Australia’s SPI futures contract was at 7,457, up from the S&P/ASX 200‘s close at 7,442.8.

Major stock indexes in the U.S. reversed losses to rise slightly at the close.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 87.06 points, or 0.25%, to 34,583.57 after losing as much as 300 points earlier in the session. The S&P 500 was up 0.43% at 4,500.21, and the Nasdaq Composite inched up 0.06% to 13,897.30 following two straight days of losses.

Defensive stocks such as consumer staples and health care led the market comeback.

“The reaction to the Fed minutes early yesterday morning continued to dominate markets overnight,” Taylor Nugent, an economist at the National Australia Bank, wrote in a note.

Weekly jobless claims in the U.S. fell to 166,000 last week, the lowest number in more than 53 years.

The 10-year Treasury yield touched 2.667%, its highest level since March 2019. It was last at 2.6654%.

Elsewhere, the Reserve Bank of India will meet for the last day of its monetary policy meetings. Economists predict that interest rates will only rise in August, according to a Reuters poll.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 99.751.

The Japanese yen traded at 124.11 per dollar, while the Australian dollar was at $0.7478.

U.S. crude futures rose 0.7% to trade at $96.70 per barrel early in Asia.

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