Asian Equities Mainly Higher

Asian share markets were mostly firmer on Tuesday and the euro clung to rare gains, relieved that European equities had weathered Greece’s election outcome without much disruption.  Bad weather in the United States curbed activity on Wall Street in a busy week for earnings, while investors had reason for caution as the Federal Reserve holds its first policy meeting of the year.

Japan’s Nikkei gained 1.4 percent, while Australia’s main index added 0.5 percent. Moves were mostly modest and MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was flat on the day.  China went its own way and the Shanghai index slipped 0.5 percent.

On Wall Street, the Dow had ended Monday up a bare 0.03 percent, while the S&P 500 gained 0.26 percent and the Nasdaq 0.29 percent.  A blizzard engulfing New York is expected to keep many investment banks and fund managers on skeleton staff, though the main exchanges all plan to open as usual on Tuesday.


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