Asian equities rose on Friday as investors looked to end the year on an optimistic note after U.S. data showed the Federal Reserve’s aggressive monetary policy was dampening inflationary pressures even as worries over COVID cases in China persist.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (.MIAPJ0000PUS) rose 0.71% and was set to end December flat. The index is set to end the year down 19% – it’s worst performance since 2008.
U.S. stocks closed sharply higher overnight buoyed by data showing rising U.S. jobless claims that suggested the Federal Reserve’s interest rate hikes are reducing inflationary pressures.
Investors have been worried that central banks efforts to tame inflation could lead to an economic slowdown, while the uncertainty over how swiftly China’s economy will recover in the wake of removal of COVID controls have kept markets subdued.