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Asian stocks rebound as investors assess impact of trade war

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Asia stocks rebounded as concerns over the possibility of full-scale trade war between the world’s two biggest economies eased. Chinese equity markets reopened after a long weekend.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index gained 0.8 percent 172.97 as of 12:16 p.m. in Hong Kong, led by gains in healthcare stocks. All of major markets from Japan to South Korea gained except for the Philippines.

U.S. President Donald Trump said Beijing will relax its restrictions “because it’s the right thing to do,” and added that deals will be made on tax reciprocity and intellectual property. Investors focus will now turn to China’s Boao Forum, where President Xi Jinping is among senior officials scheduled to speak. All major U.S. equity indexes on the cash market ended last week lower as data showed March payrolls were cooler than economists forecast.

“Investors started to realized that the risk from a trade war between U.S. and China is quite manageable and the impact should be limited to other countries in Asia, particularly those in Southeast Asia,” Jeffrosenberg Tan, head of investment strategy at PT Sinarmas Sekuritas, said. “The Federal Reserves might be more dovish after the payroll date which is good for the regional currencies.” — Bloomberg