Asian stocks were a fraction firmer on Monday as investors set aside geopolitical concerns for the moment to focus on the generally upbeat flow of U.S. corporate earnings ahead of a host of results due this week.
Volumes were light, however, with Japanese markets on holiday. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.24 percent, with small gains for most markets across Asia. A crowd of U.S. companies report this week, ranging from Apple Inc to McDonald’s Corp, Coca-Cola Co and Caterpillar Inc.
Thomson Reuters data showed that of 82 companies in the S&P 500 that had reported earnings through Friday morning, 68 percent beat Wall Street’s expectations, roughly in line with the 67 percent rate for the past four quarters and above the 63 percent rate since 1994.