Japanese shares have risen despite the latest trade figures showing exports have fallen for a third straight month. The country’s exports fell by 8% in December from a year earlier, suggesting that China’s slowdown continues to affect demand.
The Nikkei 225 index rose by 0.3% to 17,006.28 points, building on Friday’s rally when it climbed almost 6%. Markets surged late last week on hints that central banks in Europe and Japan would continue monetary easing.
The recovery had come after shares had been hit by ongoing concerns over record low oil prices due to over supply and a slump in demand in a slowing global economy.
China rebound continues
Chinese markets also continued last week’s strong finish, trading higher both in Hong Kong and on the mainland markets. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong rose by 1.3% to 19,336.03, while the Shanghai Composite edged 0.5% higher to 2,932.86.
In Australia, the benchmark S&P ASX 200 rose 1.2% to 4,973.40 points. The commodity-heavy market was helped by a rebound in both oil and iron ore prices. In South Korea, the Kospi index followed the region’s trend, increasing 0.9% to 1,896.84 points (BBC News, 2016).