9 Apr 2009

Asia-Pacific markets higher

10:56 pm on 9 April 2009

Markets in the Asia-Pacific region continued to climb on Thursday.

Asian stocks pushed back towards a six-month high, while Japan's big stimulus spending and signs of stabilising economic activity drove up government bond yields.

Shares in tech-heavy Taiwan - one of the best performing stock markets in the world this year - led the rise in Asia as companies such as contract chip maker UMC jumped on signs of improving demand.

Japan's Nikkei share average was up 3.74% at the close after the government announced a bigger-than-expected stimulus package of $US154 billion, or about 3% of gross domestic product.

The Nikkei climbed 321.05 points to 8,916.06.

In Hong Kong, share prices closed up 2.97%, tracking gains on other bourses in the region. The benchmark Hang Seng Index rose 429.58 points to 14,904.44.

The Australian stock market closed stronger after gains from the big miners, financials and energy stocks amid the largest monthly jump in unemployment since the 1991 recession.

The benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was 52.1 points, or 1.44% higher at 3671.6, while the broader All Ordinaries gained 50 points, or 1.4% to 3617.5.

In the New Zealand, the market inched up 2 points, or 0.09%, to 2571 on turnover of $84 million.

Telecom was down 1 cent to $2.36, but Contact Energy rose 5c to $5.75 and Fletcher Building gained 15c to $6.20.

Sky Network Television rose 5c to $3.90 after securing the host broadcast rights to the 2011 Rugby World Cup