Stocks rise

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    TOKYO- Asian stocks rose, bolstered by Wall Street’s record closing highs and signs of new momentum in Beijing’s and Washington’s efforts to end their long and acrimonious trade dispute.

    MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.5 percent to a one-week high. Australian shares were up 0.9 percent, while Japan’s Nikkei stock index rose 0.91 percent.

    Shares in the region extended gains on Tuesday after Beijing said Liu He, China’s Vice premier and chief trade negotiator, held a call with his US counterparts and that both sides reached consensus on solving relevant problems.

    That followed positive headlines out of China and the United States on Monday, which had helped bolster confidence.

    The yen fell to a two-week low versus the dollar, while the Swiss franc traded near a six-week low against the greenback as the optimistic tone sapped demand for safe-haven currencies.

    Oil prices erased early losses to edge higher amid cautious optimism about progress toward relieving one of the biggest risks to the global economic outlook.

    “The broad trend is the markets are looking for a deal because trade has been the biggest factor weighing on global growth and holding back confidence,” said Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy and chief economist at AMP Capital Investors in Sydney.

    “We have a low interest rate environment that is supportive of equities. If we get better economic news and relief from geopolitical risks, equities could rally further next year.”

    US stock futures rose 0.21 percent in Asia on Tuesday.

    Wall Street’s three main stock averages closed at record highs on Monday, buoyed by hopes for a trade deal and by M&A activity.

    Traders pointed to China’s decision to increase punishments for intellectual property rights violations as a fresh concession to the United States in the drawn-out and volatile negotiations. – Reuters