Investing.com-- Japanese stocks moved back towards a 33-year high on Friday, outpacing their Asian peers amid increased optimism over chipmaking stocks, while Chinese markets lagged as investors fretted over slowing economic growth and worsening U.S. ties.
Broader Asian stocks also ticked lower in anticipation of more cues on the U.S. debt ceiling and a potential default.
The Nikkei 225 rose 0.6% and was trading just below 33-year highs hit earlier this week, after positive earnings from U.S. chipmaker NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ: NVDA ) boosted local stocks that are exposed to the firm. Nvidia said increased interest in artificial intelligence will fuel chip demand this year.
The broader TOPIX added 0.2%, also moving back towards 33-year peaks.
Semiconductor testing equipment maker Advantest Corp. (TYO: 6857 ) jumped 5.1% to a record high, while chipmakers Tokyo Electron Ltd. (TYO: 8035 ) and Dainippon Screen Mfg. Co., Ltd. (TYO: 7735 ) surged 6% and 9%, respectively.
Japanese stocks also benefited from a weaker-than-expected inflation print for Tokyo , which could herald more weakness in nationwide inflation and keep the Bank of Japan dovish.
Optimism over Nvidia spilled over into other chip-heavy indexes. The Taiwan Weighted index rose 1.2%, buoyed by gains in TSMC (TW: 2330 ), while South Korea’s KOSPI edged 0.2% higher on strength in Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (KS: 005930 ) and SK Hynix Inc (KS: 000660 ).
But on the other hand, China’s Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 and Shanghai Composite indexes fell 0.4% and 0.1%, respectively. The two were set to lose nearly 3% this week as concerns over worsening ties between Washington and Beijing battered sentiment towards Chinese markets.
China’s banning of local sales by U.S. chipmaker Micron Technology Inc (NASDAQ: MU ) this week drove up fears of a renewed trade war between the two countries, although U.S. officials said the move had not “torpedoed” relations.
Rising COVID-19 cases and slowing economic growth also kept investors wary of China, with a new outbreak set to peak by late-June. Weak economic indicators for April showed that growth in the country was slowing despite the lifting of anti-COVID measures earlier this year.
Broader Asian markets were muted as focus remained on negotiations over raising the U.S. debt ceiling and avoiding a default. Negotiations were ongoing ahead of a June 1 deadline for a U.S. default, although lawmakers offered little indication that a deal was imminent.
A default is likely to result in a U.S. recession, and could have dire consequences for the global economy. This, coupled with a recession in Germany , kept appetite for risk-heavy stocks limited.
Add Chart to Comment
We encourage you to use comments to engage with users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:
- Enrich the conversation
- Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed.
- Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically.
- Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases.
- NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and links within a comment will be removed
- Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user.
- Don’t Monopolize the Conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also believe strongly in giving everyone a chance to air their thoughts. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
- Only English comments will be allowed.
Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.