Asian markets show gains as Italian referendum result is brushed off and Dow Jones Hit New Record Close

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Asian indices finished Tuesday in positive territory as the Nikkei 225, Hang Seng, Australia’s ASX 200 and Singapore’s Straits Times Index (STI) all finished the session up. A positive European session on Monday, where equities refused to panic over the Italian referendum result, was followed by the Dow Jones Industrial Average touching a new record high on Wall Street, closing 0.2% up at 19,216.24. The S&P and Nasdaq also showed gains, larger than the DJIA in in fact, closing 0.6% and 1% to the good.

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Following on from that, the Nikkei 225 finished the session in Tokyo up 0.47% with the sectors showing the best overall gains power, banking and finance and shipbuilding. Electricity utility Kansai Electric Power Co., was the day’s biggest gainer, up 7.62%. In mid-November the company received approval from Japan’s nuclear regulator to keep the No. 3 reactor at its Mihama plant operating until 2036, when it will be 60 years old. Mitsui Mining and Smelting Co. was in second place with a gain of 5.89% and Nippon Yusen, the ship builder, third, up 5.79%.

Toshiba finished 3.8% up on Tuesday, Panasonic 2.61% and Sony and Canon 0.95% and 0.33% respectively. Car manufacturers had a very strong day in Europe on Monday and today Nissan, Honda and Toyota registered 1.31%, 0.85% and 0.83% gains on the Nikkei.

The day’s biggest faller proved to be Ajinomoto Co., a foods and chemicals producer, down 2.33%. The company has recently been on an acquisitions spree with coffee trademarks, a Turkish food company and African seasonings company among the new additions to its stable. Dainippon Screen, which manufactures semiconductors and flat panel displays, was down 2.33% and Toho Co., a film, theatre and distribution company, lost 1.965.

Cathay Pacific Airways was the biggest faller on Tuesday with a 0.77% fall. The airline announced that it will conduct a critical review of its business model as net income dropped 82% in the first 6 months of the year and 2017 is predicted to be “challenging”. Airlines around the world are expected to see profits hit by the rise in fuel expenses the expected rise in oil prices in 2017 will lead to. Bucking the trend, life insurance group AIA and real estate company Cheung Kong Property Holdings were the second and third heaviest fallers, down 0.66% and 0.59%.

Meanwhile, in Australia, the ASX 200 added 0.52% with the A REITS, mining and commodities and industrials sectors performing strongly. The big winner was in another sector though, with Regis Healthcare rising 14.39% as the Australian government announced tweaks to its planned budget cuts for the funding of care residents and patients. The government pays a fixed rate per day for care patients with add-ons for those considered to require greater attention. There had been concern that healthcare businesses have been over-claiming for such cases, with budget cuts having been intended to address the situation. However, lobbying by the industry, raising concerns that patients who genuinely require more costly care would suffer, has led to amendments to how the cuts will be structured. Healthcare peers Japara Healthcare and Estia Health were the 2nd and 3rd highest risers, up 10.89% and 10.28%.

Gold production and exploration company Regis Resources was the biggest faller, down 5%. The company’s share price has been on a downward trajectory since August but had picked up briefly in early November on analyst upgrades. Nickel sulphide explorer Western Areas and lithium and borax miner Orobobre were also down 2.66% and 2.6% respectively.

In Singapore the STI has finished 0.21% up with the real estate sector having had a particularly strong session.

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