North Korea nuclear test fails to shake Asian markets

12 Feb 2013 | 07:43
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Japanese equities have led Asian markets higher as news of a nuclear test by North Korea failed to significantly dampen optimism after a three-day break.

Japan's Nikkei index reversed losses sustained on Friday to close up 1.9% at 11,369 after the country's economic minister said the government would seek to address share prices that remain "too cheap", according to state media.

The index eased back from day highs in the late afternoon after news emerged that North Korea had conducted its first nuclear test since 2009, but held on to the majority of its gains.

The Nikkei has now risen 9.3% so far this year as investors take heart from policymakers' efforts to kickstart the Japanese economy and stave off deflationary pressures.

Overnight, the yen continued recent weakness to fall to 93.42 against the dollar, its lowest level since May 2010, though the currency firmed later on to trade at 94.24.

Elsewhere in the region, the Hang Seng and the Sensex had made small gains shortly before the close, up 0.2% and 0.4% respectively.

US markets closed flat on Monday, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones down 0.1% apiece.

Categories: Economics / Markets

Topics: JapanKorea

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