HONG KONG, HK – Asian shares were mostly up on Tuesday as Alibaba’s impressive Hong Kong debut and news of the US-China trade talks gaining momentum cheered investors. However, these were not enough to stop the Hang Seng index from slipping.
Alibaba’s Hong Kong-listed shares jumped 6.6% to HK$187.60 on its first trading day. The e-commerce giant’s HK debut is going down in history as the world’s largest initial public offering (IPO) in 2019.
Most mainland China stocks enjoyed gains today. The Shenzhen Component rose 0.53% to 9,677.23 while the Shenzhen Composite was trading 0.324% higher at 1,605.64. However, the Shanghai Composite was mainly unaffected and stayed at 2,907.06.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 saw an increase of 0.35% to end the day at 23,373.32. The Topix rose by 0.16% to 1,705.71. The KOSPI started the trading day on a positive note but later slipped 0.1% to close at 2,121.35.
Stocks in Australia also enjoyed gains. The S&P/ASX 200 pushed forward by 0.83% to end at 6,787.50. Westpac shares also went up 1.72% after news of the company’s CEO resigning hit the media. The lending company has been tumultuous due to a money-laundering issue.
Alibaba’s groundbreaking debut wasn’t enough to stop the Hang Seng Index (HSI) from sliding though. The index dropped 0.3% to26,913.92 and ended its two-day winning run. It’s also the fifth consecutive trading day that the HSI didn’t close higher than 27,000.
The Hang Seng’s tepid performance is said to be caused by the ongoing protests in Hong Kong. The territory’s chief, Carrie Lam, said the landslide victory of pro-democracy parties in the recent elections had a strong “political dimension.”
Lam stated that it sent a clear message of how unhappy the island’s citizens were about the “deficiencies” in their government and how it handled the social problems that plagued Hong Kong for the last five months.
Global markets also had a good day. US stock market futures in Asia went up 0.08% after Wall Street closed to record highs on Monday. This was said to be partly driven by major acquisitions. LVMH had offered to buy US-based jewelry firm Tiffany & Co. Meanwhile, Charles Schwab Corp. recently purchased brokerage company TD Ameritrade Holding Corp.
Meanwhile, Euro Stoxx 50 futures enjoyed a 0.03% gain. The German DAX rose 0.12% while the FTSE went up 0.14%.
Investors were reportedly buoyed by China’s move to increase penalties for violations on intellectual property rights. The decision was seen as a concession to US demands. Positive comments from Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping also encouraged traders.