TOKYO (Reuters) – Asia stocks rose modestly on Tuesday following data showing Chinaâ€™s economy grew a little faster than expected in the first quarter.
An investor looks at an electronic board showing stock information at a brokerage house in Nanjing, Jiangsu province, China April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Stringer
The dollar was barely changed, with demand for safe-haven U.S. Treasuries ebbing as investor risk appetite improved in parts of the broader markets as investors took the view Western-led strikes on Syria were a one-off intervention.Chinaâ€™s economy grew a welcome 6.8 percent in the first quarter of 2018 from a year earlier, official data showed on Tuesday, unchanged from the previous quarter.
But separate data showed March industrial output missed expectations and first-quarter fixed-asset investment growth slowed, tempering equity market gains.
MSCIâ€™s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan edged up 0.05 percent.
Australian stocks gained 0.5 percent, South Koreaâ€™s KOSPI dipped 0.1 percent and Hong Kongâ€™s Hang Seng gained 0.15 percent.
Shanghai rose 0.15 percent and Japanâ€™s Nikkei was flat.
While Saturdayâ€™s missile strikes were the biggest intervention by Western countries against Syria, investor risk appetite improved on speculation that the attacks would not lead to prolonged conflict.
â€œThe markets had been bracing for a possible escalation in Syria following President Trumpâ€™s earlier warnings. Military action, however, has been limited, bringing relief,â€� said Kota Hirayama, senior emerging markets economist at SMBC Nikko Securities in Tokyo.
â€œThat said, the underlying picture has not changed. Conflict continues in Syria and trade issues remain unresolved. Geopolitics will impact the markets again.â€�
The Dow gained 0.87 percent and the S&P 500 rose 0.8 percent on Monday, with the biggest boosts from technology and healthcare sectors as investors were optimistic about the earnings season and appeared less worried about U.S.-led missile attacks in Syria. [.N]
S&P 500 companies are expected to report an 18.6 percent jump in first-quarter profit, on average, the biggest rise in seven years, according to Thomson Reuters data.
The dollar index against a basket of six major currencies was little changed at 89.441 after losing 0.4 percent overnight.
The euro was steady at $1.2377 . The dollar was effectively flat at 107.060 yen
The pound rose to $1.4355 , its highest since June 2016, with focus on data that could cement expectations of a May interest rate increase from the Bank of England. [GBP/]
The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) stepped into the currency market again on Tuesday, buying HK$5.77 billion ($735 million) in Hong Kong dollars as the local currency repeatedly hit the lower end of its allowable trading band.
The 10-year U.S. Treasury note yield was at 2.834 percent after rising to 2.865 on Monday, its highest since March 22.
U.S. crude oil futures rose 0.4 percent to $66.49 a barrel after tumbling nearly 1.8 percent overnight as concerns over tensions in the Middle East waned.
Brent crude climbed 0.3 percent to $71.61 a barrel.
Reporting by Shinichi Saoshiro; Additional reporting by the Hong Kong and Singapore newsrooms; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Eric Meijer