Global Shares Mostly Higher After Wall Street Rally

By The Associated Press
The Associated Press
The Associated Press
January 4, 2022 Updated: January 4, 2022

TOKYO—Global shares were mostly higher Tuesday despite worries about rising numbers of coronavirus cases.

France’s CAC 40 added 0.7 percent in early trading to 7,266.59, while Germany’s DAX edged up 0.3 percent to 16,064.91. Britain’s FTSE 100 gained 1.2 percent to 7,475.46. The future contract for the Dow industrials was 0.2 percent higher and the contract for the S&P 500 also gained 0.2 percent.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 jumped 1.8 percent to 29,301.79 in Tokyo’s first trading day of 2022. Shares also rose in Australia, South Korea, and Hong Kong, but edged lower in Shanghai.

Toyota Motor Corp. gained 6.1 percent, while Sony Corp. added 3.4 percent.

Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki and other dignitaries rang a bell at the Tokyo Stock Exchange to herald the opening of trading. At the smaller exchange in Osaka, in western Japan, women carried on the tradition of attending the year’s opening ceremony in colorful kimono.

japan-finance-minister
Japan’s Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki rings a bell during a ceremony to mark the first trading day of the year at the Tokyo Stock Exchange in Tokyo, Japan, on Jan. 4, 2022. (Kyodo News via AP)

Troubled Chinese developer Evergrande announced it had been ordered to demolish a 39-building resort in the southern province of Hainan. Shares in the company were suspended from trading on Monday but resumed trading Tuesday, gaining 1.9 percent.

Evergrande is struggling with $310 billion in debt and the order to demolish the resort was a new blow to its finances.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was little changed, inching up less than 0.1 percent to 23,289.84. The Shanghai Composite edged down 0.2 percent to 3,632.33.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 jumped nearly 2.0 percent to 7,589.80. South Korea’s Kospi gained less than 1 point to 2,989.24.

Asia has had fewer coronavirus infections and deaths than the U.S. and parts of Europe. But worries are growing about an inevitable surge with reported detections of faster spreading omicron.

On Monday, the S&P 500 rose 0.6 percent to 4,796.56 and the Dow finished 0.7 percent higher, at 36,585.06. Both indexes eclipsed the record highs they set last Wednesday. The Nasdaq composite rose 1.2 percent to 15,832.80.

Smaller company stocks also rose. The Russell 2000 gained 1.2 percent to 2,272.56.

Recent solid gains suggest investors remain bullish about stocks, despite the recent spike in COVID-19 cases from virus’ fast-spreading omicron variant and expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will begin pushing up interest rates sometime this year to fight rising inflation.

Investors have several key pieces of economic data to look forward to during the first week of the new year, including the Labor Department’s jobs report on Friday. The Institute for Supply Management will give investors an update on the manufacturing sector on Tuesday and the services sector on Thursday.

In energy trading, benchmark U.S. crude gained 32 cents to $76.40 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It gained 87 cents to $76.08 per barrel on Monday. Brent crude, the international standard, rose 30 cents to $79.28 a barrel.

In currency trading, the U.S. dollar rose to 115.84 Japanese yen from 115.31 yen. The euro cost $1.1298, up from $1.1296.

By Yuri Kageyama