Asian Equities Higher as U.S. Jobless Claims Decline

Asian stocks rose, paring a second weekly decline on the benchmark regional index, as data showed fewer Americans filed for jobless claims and the yen held at a six-year low against the dollar.

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. added 1.4 percent in Tokyo, the largest contributor to the regional gauge. IHI Corp. advanced 2.3 percent after Credit Suisse Group AG raised its rating on shares of the Japanese heavy-machinery maker. Alacer Gold Corp. soared 10 percent in Sydney after OceanaGold Corp. said it has made approaches to merge with Alacer.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index (MXAP) advanced 0.3 percent to 144.37 as of 10:01 a.m. in Tokyo, before markets open in Hong Kong and China. The measure is heading for a 1 percent decline this week after the weakest growth in Chinese industrial output since 2008 added to evidence the world’s second-biggest economy is losing momentum.

Bloomberg

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