Nikkei Hits Seven Year High

Asian markets traded higher, led by Japan’s Nikkei which hit a new seven-year high on reports that a planned sales tax increase might be postponed.

The Nikkei 225 index closed up more than 2% at 17,124.11 – its highest level since October 2007.

Shares jumped on news that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe might postpone the planned 10% increase in sales tax.

Local media said Mr Abe might call a snap election before the end of the year if he decides to delay the rise.

Official figures also showed that Japan’s current account surplus in September rose to 963bn yen ($8.4bn; £5.2bn), beating expectations.

The dollar firmed to 115.22 yen, after slipping to 114.71 yen in earlier trade.

In Greater China, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index closed up 63.58 points at 23,808.28. Investors extended Monday’s rally on news of a 17 November start date for the Hong Kong-Shanghai connect, which will kick off trading between both stock exchanges.

However, on the mainland shares fell back, with the Shanghai Composite Index closing down 4 points at 2,469.67.

via BBC

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza