Asia-Pacific stocks rise after Dow soars to record close overnight; China's first quarter GDP print ahead

  • Investors will watch markets in India on Friday as the Covid situation in the country remains severe, with daily virus infections crossing the 200,000 mark on Thursday.
  • A slew of Chinese economic data — including the country's first quarter gross domestic product and industrial production for March — is expected to be out at around 10:00 a.m. HK/SIN on Friday.
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed the 34,000 milestone for the first time overnight on Wall Street to a new record close.

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SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific edged higher in Friday morning trade as investors await the release of Chinese economic data.

The Nikkei 225 in Japan rose 0.35% while the Topix index traded slightly higher. South Korea's Kospi advanced 0.24%.

Australian stocks were muted as the S&P/ASX 200 traded fractionally higher.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.11% higher.

Investors will watch markets in India on Friday as the Covid situation in the country remains severe, with data released Thursday showing daily virus infections crossing the 200,000 mark.

A slew of Chinese economic data — including the country's first quarter gross domestic product and industrial production for March — is also expected to be out at around 10:00 a.m. HK/SIN on Friday.

Overnight stateside, the Dow surged 305.10 points to a record close of 34,035.99 — the first time it has crossed the 34,000 level. The S&P 500 also reached a record high, jumping 1.11% to 4,170.42. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 1.31% to 14,038.76.

Currencies and oil

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, sat at 91.661 following its weakening earlier this week from above 92.1.

The Japanese yen traded at 108.63 per dollar, having strengthened from levels above 109.6 against the greenback earlier in the trading week. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.775, above levels below $0.768 seen earlier this week.

Oil prices were lower in the morning of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures down 0.25% to $66.77 per barrel. U.S. crude futures shed 0.28% to $63.28 per barrel.

Here's a look at what's on tap:

  • China: First quarter GDP, industrial production and retail sales for March at 10:00 a.m .HK/SIN

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