Asian Markets: Hong Kong IPO fever returns


Shares in Asia closed higher across the region today. In Japan, the Nikkei Index added 0.3 percent to close at 9,832, buoyed by positive data out of Australia showing that the country had added 40,600 workers.

Shipping stocks were among the best performers as overall shipping fees increased, with Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd. (KAKKF) soaring 7.4 percent, Nippon Yusen K.K. (NYUKF) climbing 7.3 percent, and Mitsui OSK Lines (MSLOF) gaining 5.5 percent. Share prices were also helped by Merrill Lynch lifting its rating on all three shippers.

Carmakers were in positive territory after a dramatic day; Typhoon Melor caused many car manufacturers to temporarily close their factories as several areas were evacuated. Toyota Motor Corp. (TM), which closed 12 factories because of the storm, ended the day up 1.7 percent, and Honda Motor Co. Ltd. (HMC), which closed one plant, managed a 1.3 percent gain, and Daihatsu Motor Co. Ltd. (DHTMF), the country's largest maker of compact cars, closed four factories and ended the day up 1.4 percent. Hiroshima-based Mazda Motor Corp. (MZDAF), which was unaffected by the hurricane, gained 3.3 percent as it is planning to sell new shares to reduce its loss for the year.