Asian Markets Headlines

Sri Lankan shares snap three straight weeks of gains

Sri Lankan shares ended little changed on Friday, as gains in industrial and financial stocks were offset by communication services and consumer discretionary companies, with the index posting a weekly loss after three straight weeks of gains.

Hong Kong shares rise after strong earnings boost Wall Street

Hong Kong's main Hang Seng index finished higher on Friday after strong corporate earnings boosted U.S. shares, but investors were awaiting Chinese third-quarter economic data due Monday for clues to policy direction. ** At the close of trade, the Hang Seng index was up 368.37 points, or 1.48%, at 25,330.96 after a two-day hiatus due to a typhoon and a public holiday. The Hang Seng China Enterprises index rose 1.32% to 8,966.17. ** The sub-index of the Hang Seng tracking energy shares dipped 1.2%, while the IT sector rose 2.36%, the financial sector ended 0.95% higher and the property sector rose 0.47%. ** The top gainer on the Hang Seng was Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd, which gained 7.96%, while the biggest loser was CSPC Pharmaceutical Group Ltd, which fell 3.89%. ** China's main Shanghai Composite index closed 0.4% higher at 3,572.37 points, while the blue-chip CSI300 index ended 0.38% up. ** China's central bank rolled over maturing medium-term loans on Friday and kept their interest rates unchanged, as investors continue to speculate policymakers might need to ease monetary settings to support the economy amid risks from stagflation.

EMERGING MARKETS-Most Asian FX set for strong weekly gains as dollar slips

Most Asian currencies gained against the U.S. dollar this week, as the greenback was headed for its first weekly loss in five after an improvement in risk appetite put a brake on the safe-haven currency's rally. Earlier this week, the U.S. dollar touched a one-year high but slipped as the week progressed on improving optimism around a global recovery. "With the Fed tapering expectations well-telegraphed and a Fed rate hike not likely to occur until second-half of 2022, we see some room for stretched U.S. dollar longs to unwind in the near-term," analysts at Maybank said in a note. Over the week, South Korea's won appreciated 1%, the Thai baht firmed nearly 2% and was on track for its best week since late-August, while Indonesia's rupiah jumped nearly 1% and headed for its best week since early September. The Singapore dollar and the Malaysian ringgit were also on track to post weekly gains. On the other hand, India's rupee and the Philippine peso were headed for weekly losses. Regional equities were set to post strong weekly gains as the easing of curbs in countries such as Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and the Philippines boosted sentiment. Shares in the Philippines advanced more than 4% over the week, while Singaporean equities, Thai stocks , India's Nifty 50 and Malaysian shares were set for a more than 2% gain for the week. On Friday, most Asian currencies strengthened, with South Korea's won appreciating about 0.5%, and the Indonesian rupiah scaling a near eight-month high supported by the recent surge in energy prices. "Elevated Brent, crude palm oil, natural gas prices remain supportive of commodity-linked FX, and Asian equities are largely seeing green," analysts at Maybank said. Indonesia, Southeast Asia's biggest economy and a major exporter of commodities including thermal coal, is benefiting from a global energy crunch that is pushing coal prices to record levels due to high demand and supply disruptions. The rupiah is among the best performing currencies in the region, with only a marginal drop so far this year. Investors are now awaiting Bank of Indonesia's policy meeting next week where the central bank is expected to hold interest rates steady to boost economic recovery, a Reuters poll showed. Markets in India were closed on Friday for a holiday. HIGHLIGHTS: ** Singapore electricity providers hit by global power crunch quit market - ** China thermal coal prices hit record high - ** Indonesia trade surplus shrinks less than expected in September - Asia stock indexes and currencies at 0609 GMT COUNTRY FX RIC FX FX INDE STOCK STOCK DAILY YTD X S S YTD % % DAILY % % Japan -0.37 -9.5 <.N2 1.62 5.72 0 25> China <CNY=CFX +0.07 +1.4 <.SS 0.53 3.00 S> 4 EC> Indones +0.25 -0.2 <.JK -0.55 10.21 ia 8 SE> Malaysi -0.08 -3.2 <.KL 0.26 -1.87 a 7 SE> Philipp +0.08 -5.2 <.PS 0.42 1.03 ines 7 I> S.Korea <KRW=KFT +0.36 -8.1 <.KS 1.02 5.07 C> 4 11> Singapo -0.05 -2.0 <.ST 0.49 11.83 re 6 I> Taiwan +0.26 +1.6 <.TW 2.40 13.91 2 II> Thailan -0.09 -9.8 <.SE 0.04 13.27 d 7 TI> (Reporting by Sameer Manekar in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)

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