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Hang Seng Rides Nvidia Wave as Nikkei Scales New Heights

US chip designer Nvidia’s 233% quarterly revenue surge forecast supercharged a regional rally which saw a record day in Tokyo

Most Asian markets fell on Wednesday ahead of remarks by Federal Reserve chairman Jay Powell, who will face questions in Congress on Wednesday and Thursday.
A woman wears a protective mask at the Taiwan Stock Exchange in Taipei. Photo: Reuters


Asia’s major stock indexes rode a wave of tech-fuelled optimism on Thursday with Japan’s Nikkei leading the way as it soared to a new record high.

That came after unexpectedly strong revenue forecasts from US chip designer Nvidia lifted regional tech stocks, though the gains were capped by China’s economic worries despite Beijing’s efforts to boost market confidence.

Following the closing bell overnight, Nvidia forecast a roughly 233% surge in quarterly revenue, sending its shares up some 10% after-hours.

That helped Japan’s Nikkei share average eclipse its 1989 bubble-era peak, as chip-related stocks led across-the-board gains.


Also on AF: Taiwan Chip Firms Migrate to Japan, TSMC to Open Kyushu Plant


The Nikkei closed up 2.19% at 39,098.68, having earlier risen to a high of 39,156.97, topping the previous all-time closing and intraday highs set on December 29, 1989, at the peak of the nation’s bubble economy. The broader Topix was ahead 1.27%, or 33.41 points, to 2,660.71.

Japan’s benchmark has rocketed about 52% from its January 2023 trough, supercharged by a tech-rally, corporate governance changes and rising exporters’ profits thanks to a weak yen.

Tokyo Electron jumped 6% to give the biggest boost to the Nikkei, while chip-testing equipment maker Advantest surged 7.5%.

Another chip-related share, Screen Holdings, rallied more than 10%, while start-up investor SoftBank Group rose more than 5%.

Chinese stocks rose, buoyed by Nvidia’s forecast, but investor sentiment is still seen as fragile without a material pickup in economic activity.

China’s blue-chip CSI 300 Index was up 0.86%, while the Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.27%, or 37.40 points, to 2,988.36. The Shenzhen Composite Index on China’s second exchange advanced 1.29%, or 21.08 points, to 1,650.10.

Cambricon Technologies, one of China’s top AI-related chipmakers, jumped nearly 10%.

Meanwhile, Hong Kong’s benchmark Hang Seng Index also enjoyed a tech lift, rising 1.45%, or 239.85 points, to close at 16,742.95.


US Dollar Retreats

Elsewhere across the region, in earlier trade, Seoul stocks closed higher, and markets in Mumbai, Taipei, Bangkok, Manila and Wellington were also up. Sydney was flat. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.07%.

Meanwhile, US stock index futures signalled gains, following a mixed session on Wednesday for the main benchmarks. S&P 500 futures rallied 0.75% and tech-focused Nasdaq futures jumped 1.39%.

The 10-year US Treasury yield eased slightly in Asian time on Thursday to 4.3068%, close to the 4.332% level marked a week ago and which had not been seen since the end of November.

The bulk of policymakers at the US Federal Reserve’s last meeting in January were concerned about the risks of cutting interest rates too soon, with broad uncertainty about how long borrowing costs should remain at their current level, minutes released on Wednesday showed.

That reinforced the view among traders that any rate cut is not imminent, with market pricing suggesting one-in-three odds for a first reduction in May, according to CME Group’s FedWatch Tool.

The dollar continued to retreat from a three-month high reached last week, when the US dollar index, which tracks the currency against six major peers, reached 104.97. It was flat at 103.99 in early trading on Thursday.

Elsewhere, oil prices rose slightly, adding to gains from the previous session that came amid signs of tighter supply.


Key figures

Tokyo – Nikkei 225 > UP 2.19% at 39,098.68 (close)

Hong Kong – Hang Seng Index > UP 1.45% at 16,742.95 (close)

Shanghai – Composite > UP 1.27% at 2,988.36 (close)

London – FTSE 100 < DOWN 0.01% at 7,661.47 (0935 GMT)

New York – Dow > UP 0.13% at 38,612.24 (Wednesday close)


  • Reuters with additional editing by Sean O’Meara


Read more:

Euphoria in Japan as Nikkei Surges to a Record High

China Banks Approve $17bn For Housing as Policy Debate Rages

China’s Financial Watchdogs Vow to Maintain Strict Supervision

Nikkei Dips on Tech Worries, Hang Seng Enjoys Stimulus Boost



Sean O'Meara

Sean O'Meara is an Editor at Asia Financial. He has been a newspaper man for more than 30 years, working at local, regional and national titles in the UK as a writer, sub-editor, page designer and print editor. A football, cricket and rugby fan, he has a particular interest in sports finance.


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