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    Dec 2009


    Default Asia stocks rise as Europe shockwaves fade

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    Asian stock markets staged a modest recovery Tuesday as the initial shockwaves from election results in Europe faded. Trading is expected to remain volatile as Greece struggles to form a government after voters punished pro-austerity parties.

    Japan’s Nikkei 225 index edged up 0.7 per cent to 9,179.68, a day after closing at its lowest level in three months. South Korea’s Kospi added 0.5 per cent to 1,965.34 while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was narrowly higher at 4,304.05.

    Benchmarks in Taiwan, Indonesia and Singapore also rose. But Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell marginally to 20,525.95. Key indexes in mainland China also slipped.

    Markets were thrown into a tailspin after weekend elections in France and Greece led to a sharp shift in the political landscape. In France, President Nicolas Sarkozy was thrown out of office by voters opposed to his belt-tightening programme. Investors are worried that a changing of the guard in Europe’s leadership could jeopardize its plans for fighting a two-year debt crisis.

    Asian shares posted sharp declines Monday, but European markets eventually found their footing and rose particularly since a victory by French Socialist candidate Francois Hollande had been expected, said Lorraine Tan, director of equities research at Standard & Poor’s in Singapore.
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