TOKYO: Stocks here opened slightly higher today, underpinned by a lower yen and gains in US shares on optimism over US-China trade talks.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index, which closed at a two-month high on Wednesday, added 0.18 percent or 37.77 points to 21,182.25 in early trade. The broader Topix index was up 0.23 percent or 3.67 points at 1,593.00. “Japanese stocks will likely test their rebounding power (from lows around the turn of the year) thanks to continued gains in US shares and the yen’s drop,” Okasan Online Securities said in a note.
The market is “prone to profit-taking out of caution” after the Nikkei rose more than 800 points in the past two days, it added. Wall Street stocks rose for a second straight session Wednesday with investors betting that talks this week in Beijing between the top US and Chinese officials will help avert new US tariff actions scheduled for 1st March.
The greenback was changing hands at 110.93 yen early Thursday, up from 110.61 yen when the Tokyo market closed the previous day. A lower yen is positive for Japanese exporters as it makes their products more competitive outside Japan and also inflates profits when repatriated. Nintendo rose 0.25 percent to 30,070 yen and Honda climbed 1.43 percent to 3,044 yen. But Nissan was down 0.23 percent at 936.1 yen ahead of new Renault boss Jean-Dominique Senard’s meeting with officials from the Japanese automaker.
Former Nissan chief Carlos Ghosn on Wednesday shook up his legal team as he vowed to vigorously defend himself against financial misconduct charges. Investor reactions were muted to Japan’s growth data, released early Thursday, which fell within market expectations. It showed the world’s third-largest economy expanded 0.3 percent in the final quarter of 2018 after taking a hit from a series of natural disasters earlier in the year.
Bears growl at Hong Kong bourse
HONG KONG: Shares fell more than one percent Tuesday, hit by concerns over rising Iran-US tensions and as investors await this week’s crucial trade talks between Donald Trump and Xi Jinping.
The Hang Seng Index sank 1.15 percent, or 327.02 points, to 28,185.98. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.87 percent or 26.07 points,
to 2,982.07, while the Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China’s second exchange, lost 0.99 percent, or 15.63 points, to 1,560.46.
Are journalists being exploited to harm civil-military ties?
LONDON: Savants insinuate that RAW has indulged in 5th Generation Warfare through exploiting journalists and intellectuals who are inclined towards progressive movement and call themselves liberals.
Since UK-based intellectual Aisha Siddiqa and self-exiled journalist, Taha Siddiqui both contribute to The Quint and The Print* known for publishing controversial pieces, some believe that their work is being wrongly exploited.
Numerous instances of progressive intellectuals, writers and journalists could be quoted from the annals who blamed Pakistan Army for not confining to garrisons or defending land borders and undesirable involvement of ISI in political affairs.
Many believe the present aggressive attitude of progressives could harm the civil-military ties. Then there are those who say that in the garb of diplomats, spooks are exploiting journalists in order to create misconception against Pakistan.
*’The Print’ was founded by Indian Journalist Shekar Gupta and ‘The Quint’ was initiated by Raghav Bahl & Ritu Kapur.
Rajasthan stampede: Rahul Gandhi mourns the death of 14
RAJASTHAN: Over 14 people were killed and 60 injured in a stampede at a religious gathering here today after strong winds caused a large marquee to collapse.
More than a thousand people were at the event where Hindu religious sermons were being given. According to a senior police officer, there was a stampede and it appeared that some steel pipes fell on public gravely hurting them.
He told at least 60 people were injured. Police have launched an investigation to see if rules were flouted by organizers. Photos showed wires, pipes and step ladders lying scattered about the venue.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi took to the Tweeter to term the accident as unfortunate. He said that the incident was “unfortunate” and wished the injured a quick recovery. It is pertinent to mention here since Police and volunteers could not contain huge congregations, stampedes are common here at religious gatherings.
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