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Asia Stocks Rise on Monday             07/06 05:30


   BEIJING (AP) -- Asian stock markets rose Monday as investors shrugged off 
rising coronavirus cases in the United States and some other countries.

   Benchmarks in Shanghai, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia advanced.

   Markets rose last week after unexpectedly strong U.S. jobs data despite some 
American states reporting record new coronavirus infections.

   On Monday, the Australian state of Victoria prepared to close its border 
with neighboring New South Wales after cases spiked to a new daily high. Spain 
suspended access to a northern county due to fears of an outbreak.

   "Asia has shrugged off the COVID-19 clouds that dominated the weekend 
press," said Jeffrey Halley of OANDA in a report.

   The Shanghai Composite Index rose 4.8% to 3,302.59 and the Nikkei 225 in 
Tokyo gained 1.8% to 22,716.17. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong added 3.5% to 

   The Kospi in Seoul rose 1.6% to 2,186.45 while Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 lost 
0.3% to 6,040.40. India's Sensex opened up 1.1% at 36,418.98 and New Zealand, 
Singapore and Jakarta also gained.

   This week, investors are looking ahead to interest rate decisions in 
Australia and Malaysia. The Reserve Bank of Australia is expected to keep its 
benchmark rate at a record low of 0.25% while forecasters expect another cut 
from Bank Negara Malaysia.

   Markets also are watching an election in Singapore and possible unrest in 
Hong Kong over a security law.

   Share prices have risen as some countries ease anti-virus measures and 
reopened businesses, but forecasters warn the surge might be too early to be 
sustained by uncertain economic conditions.

   Whether the rally can be sustained "is hugely dependent on how markets react 
if improving data stabilizes or goes into reverse," said Stephen Innes of 
AxiCorp in a report.

   On Wall Street, the benchmark S&P 500 index ended a shortened four-day 
trading week up 4%.

   The Nasdaq composite climbed 0.5% to a new record. The Dow Jones Industrial 
Average gained 0.4%.

   That is despite a surge in new cases in the populous U.S. states of Florida, 
Texas and California. That has prompted some governors to halt reopening of 
businesses or to order others to re-close.

   In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude lost 16 cents to $40.49 per barrel 
in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to 
price international oils, gained 28 cents in London to $43.08 per barrel.

   The dollar gained to 107.69 yen from Friday's 107.52. The euro gained to 
$1.1290 from $1.1243.

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