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Asian stocks mixed, US &EU indices weaker

World stocks mixed, oil prices climb after Fed rate hike; Wall Street futures, London, Frankfurt, Paris sank; Hang Seng, Nikkei, Shanghai, Seoul, New Zealand and Sydney advanced

Asian stocks slip on inflation fears

Asian stocks slip on inflation fears

Beijing: Asian stocks surged Thursday, while European markets opened lower after the Federal Reserve announced its first interest rate hike since 2008 and China promised support for its real estate and internet industries.

Oil prices rose more than $4 per barrel. London and Frankfurt and Wall Street futures sank. Hong Kong's market benchmark jumped more than 7per cent and Tokyo gained 3.5per cent. Shanghai, Seoul and Sydney advanced. Wall Street's benchmark S&P 500 index rose 2.2per cent after the Fed raised its short-term lending rate by 0.25 percentage points on Wednesday. The widely anticipated change was less than the 0.5 percentage point hike advocated by some officials.

"Far from choking off growth, the start of the Fed tightening cycle seems to have been greeted warmly. Investors are cheering measures to address high inflation," Chris Turner and Francesco Pesole of ING said in a report.

In early trading, the FTSE 100 in London lost 0.1per cent to 7,283.28 and the DAX in Frankfurt sank 0.4per cent to 14,382.35. The CAC 40 in Paris shed less than 0.1per cent to 6,582.80. The Bank of England was expected to raise its key interest rate Thursday for the third time since December as it pushes ahead faster than other central banks in combating a global wave of inflation fueled by soaring energy prices. The future for the S&P 500 was 0.3per cent lower and that for the Dow Jones Industrial Average was off 0.2per cent.

On Wednesday, the Dow added 1.4per cent and the Nasdaq composite gained 3.8per cent for its biggest daily gain in 16 months. In Asia, the Hang Seng rose to 21,501.23, adding to the previous day's explosive 9.1per cent gain. The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo advanced to 26,652.89 and the Shanghai Composite Index gained 1.4per cent to 3,215.04. Asian markets were buoyed by Beijing's promise Wednesday to "invigorate the economy" by supporting the struggling real estate industry, internet companies and entrepreneurs who want to raise capital abroad. Chinese leaders announced no detailed initiatives but appeared to be trying to rebuild private sector confidence after anti-monopoly, data-security and anti-debt crackdowns caused stock prices to plunge. The Kospi in Seoul was 1.3per cent higher at 2,694.51 and Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 added 1.1per cent to 7,250.80.

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