HONG KONG: Asian stocks rose as Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said easing inflation is allowing room to adjust monetary policy and positive signs are emerging in the world’s second-largest economy.
Fanuc Corp. (6954), a maker of industrial robots that gets almost half its sales from Asia outside Japan, gained 2.9% in Tokyo. Goodman Fielder Ltd., an Australian baker, fell 1.8% after saying it hasn’t received a takeover proposal from Wilmar International Ltd. Lenovo Group Ltd. (992), a Chinese personal- computer maker, may be active today in Hong Kong after its first-quarter profit increased.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.3% to 120.21 as of 9:51 a.m. in Tokyo. twice as many stocks advanced as declined before the open of markets in Hong Kong and China.
“Monetary easing is taking effect in China,” said Kiyoshi Ishigane, a Tokyo-based strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Asset Management Co., which oversees about $70 billion.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index (MXAP) fell 7% from this year’s high on Feb. 29 through yesterday amid concern Europe’s sovereign-debt crisis will worsen and China’s economy is slowing. The regional benchmark index traded at 12.4 times estimated earnings compared with 13.6 times for the S&P 500 Index and a multiple of 11.6 for the Stoxx Europe 600 Index, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. (Bloomberg/tw)