Investing.com - Stocks were mixed in Asia on Wednesday with overnight gains on Wall street offering support.
Australia''s S&P/ASX 200 increased 0.8% while Japan''s Nikkei 225 ended the morning up 0.23%, though the trend was weak.
The Shanghai Composite index dipped 0.14% and Hong Kong''s Hang Seng index was up 1.07%.
In Japan, SoftBank fell 0.8%, and Japan Display lost 1.0% after the firm''s IPO share over allotment was not exercised, illustrating a lack of demand, say traders.
Overnight, U.S. stocks rose across the boardy after a widely-watched gauge of consumer confidence beat expectations and hit six-year highs with the Dow 30 up 0.56%, the S&P 500 index increasing 0.44% and the Nasdaq 100 rose 0.19%.
The Conference Board reported that its consumer confidence index increased to 82.3 this month, the highest since January 2008, from 78.3 in February. Analysts had expected the index to tick up to 78.6.
The report showed that consumers expect the economy to continue improving and believe it may gather momentum in the coming months.
Separately, the Commerce Department said new home sales fell by the most in five months in February, indicating headwinds still face the housing sector.
Sales of new homes fell by 3.3% in February to 440,000 units, the weakest level since last September. Still, analysts were calling for a decline of 4.9%.
January''s sales were revised down to a 455,000-unit pace from the previously reported 468,000-unit rate.
Also on Tuesday, a report on U.S. housing showed that prices rose slightly less than expected in January.
The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller home price index rose 13.2% in January from a year earlier, compared to forecasts for a 13.3% gain.
Despite the hit-or-miss housing indicators, stocks rose after investors digested the data and concluded the U.S. economy continues to recover despite lingering headwinds.
After the close of European trade Tueday , the DJ Euro Stoxx 50 rose 1.32%, France''s CAC 40 rose 1.59%, while Germany''s DAX rose 1.63%. Meanwhile, in the U.K. the FTSE 100 rose 1.30%.
On Wednesday in the euro zone, Germany is to release a report on Gfk consumer climate.
The U.S. is to release data on durable goods orders, a leading indicator of production.