Chinese stocks up on stimulus hopes, TSMC boosted by Berkshire stake

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Chinese stocks up on stimulus hopes, TSMC boosted by Berkshire stake
Credit: © Reuters.

By Ambar Warrick

Investing.com-- Chinese stocks led gains across Asia on Tuesday as investors held out for more stimulus measures by the government to counter the economic duress from COVID-19 restrictions, while Taiwan’s TSMC surged after Berkshire Hathaway disclosed a stake in the firm.

China’s blue-chip Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 index jumped 1.7%, while the Shanghai Composite index rose 1.4%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index continued to be an outperformer in Asia with a 3.3% jump and was now close to confirming a bull market with a nearly 20% rise from a 13-year low hit in October.

The People’s Bank of China kept interest rates steady on Tuesday, but pumped a significant amount of liquidity into the market as it struggles to power the Chinese economy through slowing growth.

Weak industrial production and retail sales data released on Tuesday also ramped up hopes that the government will roll out more spending measures to support growth. Chinese stocks rallied in recent sessions after the government loosened some quarantine and movement curbs under its strict zero-COVID policy.

But with the country now facing its worst outbreak in over six months, chances of a further easing of restrictions appear dim. But this could also spur more stimulus measures from the government.

Shares of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp (TW: 2330 ), also known as TSMC, surged over 4% after Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc (NYSE: BRKa ) disclosed an over $4.1 billion stake in the world’s largest chipmaker.

The stock, which is also the largest stock in the country, helped the Taiwan Weighted index rally nearly 3%.

The move also benefited broader technology stocks in Asia, with shares in Hong Kong and South Korea gaining the most.

But broader Asian markets were mixed following somewhat hawkish signals from the Federal Reserve. Vice Chair Lael Brainard said that while the central bank will consider smaller interest rate hikes in the coming months, it has no intention of pausing its rate hikes.

Her comments indicated that U.S. interest rates are likely to keep rising in the near-term, and are set to surpass levels seen during the 2008 financial crisis. Such a scenario is expected to keep pressure on Asian markets.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 index was flat after data showed the world’s third-largest economy unexpectedly shrank in the third quarter , likely indicating more pressure on local stocks.

India’s Nifty 50 index fell 0.1%, while South Korea’s KOSPI index rose 0.1%.

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