Asian Markets Rise as Investors Await Trade News; Hong Kong Stocks Rebound

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© Reuters. © Reuters. – Asian markets rose in morning trade on Friday as investors awaited updates on the Sino-U.S. trade developments. Hong Kong stocks rebounded after falling for more than 5% so far this week.

China’s was little changed at 2,910.01. The slipped 0.1%.

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said Washington is “getting close” to a trade deal with Beijing. Chinese Ministry of Commerce spokesman Gao Feng confirmed that the two sides are having “deep discussions about a phase one deal,” but said rolling back some of the existing tariffs is key to reaching an agreement.

“The trade war was begun with adding tariffs, and should be ended by cancelling these additional tariffs. This is an important condition for both sides to reach an agreement,” Feng said Thursday at a weekly press conference.

Hong Kong’s Index gained 0.3%. Political unrest remained in focus. Overnight, the U.S. Senate brought the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act under an expedited process that would allow for quick passage for the bill.

The bill could pass as early as next week, according to a Senate aide.

“The world witnesses the people of Hong Kong standing up every day to defend their long-cherished freedoms against an increasingly aggressive Beijing and Hong Kong government,” Rubio said in a statement. “Now more than ever, the United States must send a clear message to Beijing that the free world stands with Hong Kongers in their struggle.”

In response, the Chinese Foreign Ministry on Thursday warned of retaliation if the measure passes Congress.

Hong Kong has largely been paralyzed since this week. In the past four days, protesters shutdowns transportations during morning rush hours, while police fired tear gas outside major office buildings.

Japan’s traded 0.8% higher. South Korea’s rose 1.0%.

Down under, Australia’s climbed 0.8%.

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