Most Asian stocks gained on Monday, extending the rally that took global equities to a record high after a U.S. jobs report signalled the economic recovery remained intact but didn’t yet warrant any immediate withdrawal of Federal Reserve stimulus.
Japanese markets, however, bucked the trend, with the Nikkei falling 0.5% following a surge in COVID-19 infections in Tokyo, just weeks before the city hosts the Olympics.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.3%, led by a 1% gain in Taiwan. Chinese blue chips added 0.1%.
Trading is set to be thinner than usual with U.S. markets closed for the extended 4th of July weekend, meaning “some of those upside moves might be capped and price action might be choppy,” according to Kyle Rodda, a market analyst at IG in Melbourne.
“But given Friday’s nonfarm payrolls numbers, things are still really, really optimistic, and I think you’ll start to see that come through again as the week unfolds,” Rodda said.
“Conditions are right for equities to continue to push higher right across the globe.”
The MSCI All Country World index closed at a record 724.66 last week, and edged 0.1% higher on Monday.