Fed’s “patient” stance on interest rates boosts Asian stocks

<p>Asian shares soared after the US Fed statement on monetary policy.</p>

Asian stocks rose today (December 18th) after the US Federal Reserve said it would remain "patient" on interest-rate increases.

Fed chair Janet Yellen said the central bank is unlikely to raise rates before the end of April 2015, even though a series of report has shown that the US economy is on a path to a steady recovery.

The central bank is thus signalling it is edging closer to raising interest rates from record lows. 

Following the announcement, the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index jumped two per cent yesterday, the biggest gain in more than a year.

"The rally overnight is a relief rally after falling the previous days," Angus Gluskie, managing director at White Funds Management in Sydney, told Bloomberg. "But it doesn’t really alter the fundamentals, which are growth in the US is good and the sharp drop in the oil price and Russian currency are still likely to destabilise markets."

Japan's Nikkei 225 soared 2.5 per cent to 17,242.33 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 1.1 per cent to 22,828.49. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 rose 1.1 per cent to 5,221.80. China's Shanghai Composite added 0.1 per cent to 3,063.01.

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