Investing.com - Asian stocks gained Tuesday, with Japan leading the region up, as concerns over the situation in Ukraine and any possible disruption of crude supplies from Russia, the world''s top oil producer, eased.
Uncertainty over the situation in Ukraine has weighed on global sentiment over the past few weeks and in Asia other worries about an economic slowdown in China also weighed.
But Japan''s Nikkei rose 1% as the yen weakened, making export stocks in particular attractive and in a mild recovery from a 6.2% slump last week, its worst weekly performance since June last year.
Elsewhere in Asia, Australia''s S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.7% and South Korea''s Kospi was up 0.4%, and Singapore''s Straits Times Index added 0.1%. In China, the Shanghai Composite was up 0.30% and Hong Kong''s Hang Seng Index was up 0.49%.
Car makers in China got a boost on expectations for increased sales of electric cars. Anhui Jianghuai Automobile rose 8.1% to CNY10.80 and Haima Automobile gained 3.2% to CNY3.84. In the broader market lingering concerns over China''s slowing economy weighed on property firms with China Vanke down 1.6% to CNY7.64 and Poly Real Estate easing 2.1% to CNY6.93.
Overnight, U.S. stocks rose even after Crimea voted overwhelmingly in favor of becoming part of Russia, as an absence of violence and mild sanctions from the West fueled appetite for risk-on assets.
At the close of U.S. trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.13%, the S&P 500 index rose 0.96%, while the Nasdaq Composite index rose 0.81%.
European Union foreign ministers imposed travel bans and asset freezes on 21 people they have linked to the push to have Crimea secede from Ukraine and be annexed by Russia. U.S. President Barack Obama also imposed sanctions on several Russian officials involved in the incursion of Crimea, which included freezing assets in the U.S.
Still, markets were expecting more action from the West, and the muted response coupled with an absence of widespread violence in the region sparked appetite for risk-on assets, stocks especially.
Hit-or-miss U.S. economic indicators failed to halt the rally, as investors concluded that when viewed over the long term, the data pointed to an economy that continues to improve and will bolster corporate fundamentals over the long term.
Data revealed earlier that U.S. industrial production rose 0.6% in February, exceeding expectations for a 0.1% gain. Industrial production in January was revised to a 0.2% fall from a previously estimated 0.3% decline.
In a separate report, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York said its Empire State manufacturing index ticked up to 5.6 this month from 4.5 in February, missing expectations for a rise to 6.0.
Leading Dow Jones Industrial Average performers included IBM, up 1.92%, Boeing, up 1.86%, and 3M, also up 1.86%.
European indices, meanwhile, finished higher.
After the close of European trade, the EURO STOXX 50 rose 1.52%, France''s CAC 40 rose 1.32%, while Germany''s DAX 30 rose 1.37%. Meanwhile, in the U.K. the FTSE 100 rose 0.62%.
On Tuesday, the U.S. is to produce data on consumer inflation as well as reports on building permits and housing starts.
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