Asia Stocks Up For 4th Day

Asian stocks rose, with the regional benchmark index heading for a fourth day of gains, as materials and health-care shares advanced, countering a decline in Japan’s index amid a stronger yen.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index added 0.1 percent to 140.90 as of 9:03 a.m. in Tokyo after rising 1.1 percent the past three trading days. Japan’s Topix slid 0.3 percent as the yen gained 0.1 percent to 117.81 per dollar after advancing 0.3 percent yesterday. U.S. stocks slipped from a record as a drop in consumer confidence offset faster economic expansion.

“We’ve got a mixed picture,” said Chris Weston, chief market strategist at IG Markets Ltd. in Melbourne. “We may see the market run out of steam at the moment, but a pullback will be a buying opportunity.”

South Korea’s Kospi index climbed 0.1 percent. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index gained 0.9 percent, while New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index increased 0.3 percent.

Futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index were little changed today. The measure declined 0.1 percent yesterday. Consumer confidence in the U.S. declined to a five-month low in November, to a level that was weaker than the most pessimistic estimate in a Bloomberg survey of economists. Gross domestic product rose at a 3.9 percent annualized rate in the third quarter, up from an initial estimate of 3.5 percent.

West Texas Intermediate crude reached the lowest level in more than four years after nations supplying a third of the world’s oil failed to pledge output cuts before tomorrow’s OPEC meeting.

Futures on Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index and the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index each lost 0.1 percent in their most recent trading session.

Disclosure: None. 

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