By Gina Lee
Investing.com – Asian stocks were up on Thursday morning with investors balancing hopes of an economic recovery from COVID-19 against ever-increasing numbers of cases.
There are over 12 million global cases as of July 9, according to Johns Hopkins University data, with some countries re-imposing lockdowns to curb fresh outbreaks.
China’s National Bureau of Statistics released positive inflation data for June earlier in the day. The Producer Price Index (PPI) fell by 3% year-on-year, against the previous month’s drop of 3.7% and the 3.2% drop predicted in analyst forecasts prepared by Investing.com. June’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) dropped 0.1% month-on-month, smaller than May’s 0.8% drop.
China’s Shanghai Composite was up 0.50% by 11:19 PM ET (4:19 AM GMT), and the Shenzhen Component was up 1.21%.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was up 0.40%, with the city reporting 28 new cases over a two-day period on Wednesday.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 rose 0.46% and South Korea’s KOSPI gained 0.66%
Down Under, the ASX 200 rose 0.86%. Australia’s second-largest city Melbourne is on day two of a six-week lockdown to curb an outbreak in the city.
With the U.S. Congress’ $2 trillion stimulus package due to expire at the end of the month, investors are looking for more stimulus measures from the U.S. Federal Reserve as well as other central banks.
As long as central banks “have the intention of continuing to try to provide stimulus to the global economy, markets will continue to drive higher even as they dislocate from the fundamentals that would otherwise normally drive earnings and stock prices,” Shana Sissel, chief investment officer at Spotlight Asset Group, told Bloomberg.