Asian Markets Surge With Japanese Stocks Approaching Record Highs

Asian markets stocks experienced a significant rise, tracking a record close for the S&P 500, fueled by optimism surrounding potential US interest-rate cuts.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s recent comments on inflation moving back on a downward trajectory have boosted market sentiment across the globe.

MSCI AC Asia Pacific Index Achieves Longest Stretch of Gains

The MSCI AC Asia Pacific Index is on track for its longest streak of gains since May. Japanese equities are showing strong performance, with benchmarks nearing their record highs.

Notably, SoftBank Group Corp. shares have traded above their lifetime closing high for the first time in three years, driven by a global surge in AI and chip technology investments.

Singaporean stocks are also outperforming, primarily due to the robust performance of banking shares.

Japanese Equities Near Record Highs

Japan’s stock market is experiencing a remarkable rally, with key benchmarks about 1% from reaching their record highs.

This surge is part of a broader upward trend across Asian markets, highlighting the region’s resilience and growth potential.

SoftBank Group Corp. has been a standout performer, benefiting significantly from the global interest in AI and semiconductor investments.

SoftBank Group Corp. Hits Lifetime High

SoftBank Group Corp. shares have hit a milestone, trading above their lifetime closing high for the first time in three years.

This achievement underscores the company’s pivotal role in the AI and chip investment boom, which has captivated investors worldwide.

The significant rise in SoftBank’s shares is a testament to its strategic positioning and growth prospects in the tech sector.

Singaporean Stocks Outperform

Singaporean stocks have shown exceptional performance, with banking shares leading the charge.

The banking sector’s strength has provided a solid foundation for the overall market, contributing to the broader surge in Asian equities.

This robust performance highlights Singapore’s financial sector’s resilience and its pivotal role in the region’s economic landscape.

S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 Set New Records

Contracts for the S&P 500 slightly declined after the benchmark closed above 5,500 for the first time, marking its 32nd record close this year.

Tesla Inc. led the gains in megacap stocks, surging 10% and helping the Nasdaq 100 close above the 20,000 mark for the first time.

Chris Weston, head of research at Pepperstone Group in Melbourne, noted the psychological significance of these round numbers and their positive impact on Asian markets.

Broader Market Participation Fuels Optimism

The new record highs in the S&P 500 and Nasdaq are being viewed as significant wins, reflecting the broader participation and better breadth in the market.

This isn’t just about tech stocks propping up the indices; there is a more widespread engagement across various sectors.

This broader market participation is providing a strong foundation for the current rally and offering positive signals for Asian markets.

Australian Bond Yields Rise on Strong Retail Sales Data

In Australia, the three-year bond yield continued its rise following stronger-than-expected retail sales data.

This robust data has reinforced the case for a potential rate hike, indicating a strengthening economy.

Investors are closely watching economic indicators to gauge the policy outlook and anticipate future rate decisions.

US Economic Data in Focus

Investors are looking forward to key US economic data, including initial jobless claims and ADP employment data, to gain more insights into the policy outlook.

Fed Chair Jerome Powell has acknowledged significant progress in reducing inflation but emphasized the need for more evidence before considering interest rate cuts.

This cautious approach by the Fed is being closely monitored by global investors.

China’s Slowing Services Activity Raises Concerns

In China, services activity expanded at the slowest pace in eight months in June, according to a private gauge. This slowdown has raised concerns about the economy’s outlook.

While stocks in Hong Kong gained, mainland Chinese stocks fell, reflecting the mixed sentiment in the region.

US Equities Defy Doomsayers

Despite predictions of a downturn, US equities continue to perform strongly, driven by solid corporate earnings, AI enthusiasm, and expectations of lower interest rates.

The S&P 500 has added more than $16 trillion in value since its closing low in October 2022. The sustained rally has bolstered investor confidence, with many believing the upward trend is sustainable.

Upcoming US Payrolls Data

As the US market prepares for an early close on Wednesday due to the July 4 holiday, investors are gearing up for the crucial US payrolls report due on Friday.

Economists expect the report to show that employers added approximately 190,000 jobs in June, with the unemployment rate likely holding steady at 4%.

This data will be closely watched as it provides critical insights into the health of the US labor market and the broader economy.


The surge in Asian markets, led by Japanese stocks nearing record highs, reflects a broader trend of optimism fueled by potential US interest-rate cuts and strong economic indicators.

As global markets continue to react to these developments, investors remain vigilant, closely monitoring economic data and policy signals to navigate the evolving financial landscape.

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