Asia-Pacific equities were broadly higher on Wednesday, led by a solid gain for energy stocks in Hong Kong.
The Hang Seng index climbed 1.6 per cent, boosted by a 4.3 per cent advance for the energy segment reflecting the gain in oil prices during the market holiday the day before. Among the biggest movers were PetroChina and Cnooc, which surged 5 per cent and 4.1 per cent, respectively.
The move came a day after Brent reached an intraday high of $82.55 a barrel, after major producers decided not to increase production. That was its second four-year high in two days, and well up from levels near $70 a barrel in mid-August. Brent was down a touch at $81.81 a barrel on Wednesday.
Shares in Chinese restaurant group Haidilao Hotpot jumped 10 per cent on their debut in Hong Kong after being priced at the top end of the target range. The company, which specialises in spicy Sichuan-style hotpot, lost some of its heat later in the session with its shares ahead by 2.8 per cent at midday in Hong Kong.
The CSI 300 index of major Shanghai and Shenzhen stocks rose 1.6 per cent, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng China Enterprises index of big Chinese companies listed in the city added 2.2 per cent.
In Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 eked out a 0.1 per cent gain despite a 0.4 per cent decline for the financials segment.
Tokyo’s Topix bucked the trend, however, falling 0.5 per cent with the financials segment down 1.5 per cent and utilities off 1.8 per cent.
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