Asia-Pacific Shares Set for a Boost as Vaccine Hopes Again Lift Markets

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  • In Australia, the bourse resumed trading on Tuesday after a nearly full-day trading halt Monday due to a software issue.
  • Wall Street was buoyed to record highs after Moderna said preliminary phase three trial data shows its coronavirus vaccine is more than 94% effective in preventing Covid-19.

SINGAPORE — Asia-Pacific shares were set to rise on Tuesday as vaccine hopes once again lifted Wall Street to record highs.

In Japan, futures pointed to a higher open, as compared to the Nikkei 225's last close.

Over in Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 edged up 0.36% in early trading. The bourse resumed trading on Tuesday after a nearly full-day trading halt Monday that it said was due to a software issue which created "inaccurate market data."

Oil stocks in Australia jumped in the morning. Santos rose 3.58%, Oil Search surged past 4%, and Beach Energy rocketed almost 5%.

Wall Street was buoyed to record highs after Moderna said preliminary phase three trial data shows its coronavirus vaccine is more than 94% effective in preventing Covid-19.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 470.63 points, or 1.6%, to close at 29,950.44. The 30-stock Dow logged intraday and closing record highs. The S&P 500 climbed 1.2% to 3,626.91, posting an all-time closing high. The Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.8% to 11,924.13.

That came after Pfizer and BioNTech announced last week that their coronavirus vaccine was more than 90% effective.

"Equity markets focused on the improving medium‑term growth implications, which appear to be brightening from H2 2021 onwards. Yet the current virus surge is stifling near-term growth prospects," cautioned Felicity Emmett, a senior economist at ANZ, in a Tuesday note.

Outbreaks in the U.S. are still spiking, as the country added 1 million new cases of the virus in under a week. The country has now recorded more than 11 million Covid-19 cases, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was trading at 92.555, sliding from levels above 92.6 earlier.

The Japanese yen traded at 104.55 against the greenback, a touch firmer as compared to Monday. The Australian dollar was at 0.7320 against the dollar, strengthening from the 0.72 mark yesterday.

What's on tap (all times in HK/SIN):

8:30 a.m.: Singapore's non-oil exports for October, trade data

8:30 a.m.: Reserve Bank of Australia meeting minutes

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