Investing.com - Asian stock markets recovered on Wednesday after several losing sessions as markets prepared for Chinese holidays and investors expect the Federal Reserve will conclude a monetary policy meeting by announcing fresh cuts to its USD75 billion monthly stimulus program.
Many markets in the Asia-Pacific region are gearing up for the Lunar New Year long weekend, with shortened trading sessions in some centers on Thursday. Markets in China will be closed from Friday to next Thursday while markets in Hong Kong are closed from Friday until next Monday, with Singapore and Malaysia closed only on Friday.
Game developer GungHo Online Entertainment rose 7.6% and HK Electric Investments fell 2.9%.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index rose 1.8%, Hong Kong''s Hang Seng Index fell 0.07%, while China’s Shanghai Composite index was up 0.26%.
On Tuesday U.S. stocks rose after better-than-expected earnings shifted investors'' eyes away from concerns that emerging markets may be cooling, which frayed nerves in global stock exchanges in recent sessions.
Better-than-expected earnings from Ford, drug maker Pfizer and homebuilder D.R. Horton bolstered stock prices by painting a picture of improving U.S. economic fundamentals.
Also boosting prices, the Conference Board said its index of consumer confidence improved to 80.7 this month from a downwardly revised 77.5 in December.
Analysts were expecting the index to rise to 78.1.
Meanwhile a separate report showed that U.S. durable goods orders fell unexpectedly in December, though stocks continued their advance.
The Commerce Department reported earlier that durable goods orders fell 4.3% in December, confounding expectations for a 1.8% gain.
Core durable goods, which are stripped of volatile transportation items, orders fell 1.6% in December, the largest drop since March, compared to forecasts for a 0.5% increase.
Orders for core capital goods, a key barometer of private-sector business investment, fell 1.3% last month, confounding expectations for a 0.5% gain and after rising 2.6% in November.
Earnings and solid economic indicators brought in bottom fishers who snapped up nicely priced stocks after several sessions that saw declines on fears that emerging markets may be cooling.
Later today, stocks will move on the Fed''s announcement on interest rates and monetary policy as well as its language.
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