SHANGHAI, June 18 Business sentiment among
Asia's top companies hit its highest level in more than two
years in the second quarter of 2014, rising sharply on
supportive political changes around the region and positive
signs from China, a ThomsonReuters/INSEAD survey showed.
The ThomsonReuters/INSEAD Asia Business Sentiment Index
jumped to 74 in the second quarter from 64 in the first,
the highest reading since the start of 2012. A reading above 50
indicates an overall positive outlook.
Leadership change gave India and Thailand sorely-needed
shots in the arm, with the two key markets powering a rise in
the wider index. Robust scores from China and Australia also
helped lift the index with scores of 67 and 79 respectively,
both up significantly from the previous quarter.
Export-driven South Korea saw a steep drop to 50 from 67 in
the first quarter on weaker trade and consumer data. Japan and
Malaysia edged down slightly, while Singapore and the
Philippines held flat, although the Philippines still maintained
its 100 reading, the same as in the first quarter.
(Reporting by Adam Jourdan in SHANGHAI; Additional reporting by
Aditi Shah in NEW DELHI; Editing by Matt Driskill)