Asian Markets: Nomura stems losses as stocks rebound

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Asian stocks rebounded Tuesday, with Japan's Nikkei gaining 0.9 percent to close at 10,100 as the yen pulled back from an eight-month high against the dollar. This was a relief to investors who have watched the index plummet over the past two days, and may reinstill hope that the nation is continuing on the road to recovery.

Nomura Holdings Inc. (NRSCF) clawed back 4.4 percent after losing 21 percent over the past two days. This is the first time in 10 days that the financial services company has posted a gain. Electronics company Toshiba Corp. (TOSYY) also gained 2.9 percent after plunging sharply over the past two days.

Companies dependent on exports to the U.S. benefited from today's lower yen, as profits for exporters are now worth more when they are repatriated to Japan. In the automobile sector, Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. (NSANY) climbed 3.3 percent and Honda Motor Co. Ltd. (HNDAF) rose 1.1 percent. Exporter Kyocera Corp. (KYOCF) climbed 2.9 percent and Kobe Steel Ltd.(KBSTY), which has operations in the U.S., surged 5.3 percent.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng rose for the first time this week, gaining 2.1 percent to close at 21,013. E-commerce company Alibaba.com (ALBCF) soared 6.9 percent on the news that it will buy an 85 percent stake in internet infrastructure services company China Civilink for $63.8 million.

According to the Financial Times, CNOOC (CEO) is in discussions with Nigeria over the purchase of 23 prime oil blocks. This would put Chinese state-owned CNOOC in competition with western oil companies like Shell Chevron and ExxonMobil over the control of Nigeria's vast oil reserves. Although CNOOC's spokesman, Xiao Xongwei told Reuters he had never heard about the deal, shares in Hong Kong-listed CNOOC climbed 2.7 percent.

In China, the Shanghai Composite Index dropped 0.3 percent to close at 2,755 with some analysts explaining that investors are selling shares to reduce risk exposure in preparation for the upcoming National Day holiday. Chinese stock exchanges will be closed from October 1 to October 8.

Chinese airlines racked up a sixth day of losses as rising oil prices increased their operating costs; Shanghai-based China Eastern Airlines (CHEAF) dropped 1.3 percent and China Southern Airlines Ltd. (ZNH) slid 1.6 percent.

Chinese banks were among the winners as National Business Daily newspaper reported a record $88 billion in new loans for homes and cars may have been approved this month. Industrial Bank rose 3.7 percent, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank Co. gained 3 percent and China Minsheng Banking Corp was up 2.3 percent.

With more access to credit, Chinese shoppers may continue to drive the economy forward.
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