Asia Stocks Mixed; China Markets Open Higher as Holiday Rebound Boosts Sentiment

Asia’s stock markets were mixed on Monday, with mainland Chinese shares leading gains after trading resumed from the Lunar New Year holiday as investors were optimistic by solid consumption and a rebound in travel during the break.

At 9:24 a.m. (Thai time), the CSI 300, which follows the major mainland China-listed firms, has risen by more than 20% from its recent lows observed at the end of October last year, signaling that Chinese onshore equities are set for a bull market.

During the first hour of trading, the Shanghai Composite Index increased 1.36%. The Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong started with a loss of 0.72%.

The benchmark index for Japanese stocks (Nikkei 225) gained 0.26 points. The Kospi in South Korea lost 0.81%.

The Australian S&P/ASX 200 index fell by 0.10%.

Wall Street concluded the week on a high note thanks to Thursday’s better-than-anticipated GDP report and further increases in Tesla shares. The major indices all reported weekly increases, putting them on track for a month of gains.

Midweek, all eyes will be on the world’s central banks, starting with the Federal Reserve on Wednesday. Amid signs of slowing inflation, the Fed is widely expected to shift to a 0.25% hike in interest rates.

Inflation as measured by the Fed’s preferred gauges slowed to its worst annual pace in over a year in December, while consumer spending also declined, according to a report released on Friday. Inflation expectations in the United States continued to fall in late January, according to statistics from the University of Michigan, which helped enhance consumer sentiment.