More gains as Greece solution passed

<p>Regional stock markets gained for a third successive day, the Euro strengthened to a two-week high against the US dollar and bond risk slid after […]</p>

Regional stock markets gained for a third successive day, the Euro strengthened to a two-week high against the US dollar and bond risk slid after Greece’s government took the first step in adopting an austerity plan. Oil also extended a two-day rally. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index added 1.3% at noon in Tokyo. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures rose 0.2%, while Treasuries snapped the steepest three-day loss this year. 

In economic news, South Korea cut a 2011 growth forecast and raised an inflation estimate to beyond President Lee Myung Bak’s target after global demand weakened and energy costs climbed. The economy will expand 4.5%, the Finance Ministry said in a statement, down from a 5% estimate in December. Consumer prices are expected to rise 4%, exceeding the previous 3% projection. 

Thailand’s Government Pension Fund, which manages about $16 billion of assets, plans to double its investments in overseas bonds after political tension ahead of the July 3 election eroded returns on domestic equities. The country’s third-biggest money manager aims to raise its holdings in foreign debt securities to 10% of total assets by the end of this year, up from 5%, said the agency’s secretary general. 

In corporate news, BYD Co – the Chinese automaker part-owned by billionaire investor Warren Buffett – jumped 44% on its first day of trading in Shenzhen, southern China. Korea Aerospace Industries – the country’s largest plane maker – surged 38% on its debut in Seoul after completing the nation’s largest initial public offering this year.

In currencies, the Korean won rose 0.8% to 1,068.55 per dollar after data from Statistics Korea showed output climbed 8.3% in May from a year earlier, after gaining a revised 6.9% in April. New Zealand’s currency added 0.7% to 83.08 U.S. cents, while the Taiwan dollar rose 0.7% to NT$28.71 before the central bank decides on interest rates today. 

 

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