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AsiaPacific Shares Mixed as Fed Holds Rates Near Zero

Stocks in AsiaPacific traded mixed on Friday as investors continue to wait for a result from the U.S. election. Mainland Chinese stocks were lower by the afternoon, with the Shanghai composite down 0.71 while the Shenzhen component shed 1.224. Hong Kongs Hang Seng index dipped 0.18.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 was 0.88 higher while the Topix index was up 0.51. South Koreas Kospi was fractionally higher. Stocks in Australia advanced, with the SPASX 200 up 0.6. MSCIs broadest index of AsiaPacific shares outside Japan traded 0.07 lower.

Oil prices fell in the afternoon of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures down 2.15 to 40.05 per barrel. U.S. crude futures slipped 2.4 to 37.86 per barrel. Investor focus on Friday likely remained on the U.S. election with the spotlight on a few battleground states such as Arizona and Pennsylvania. Based on NBC News tally, Democratic nominee Joe Biden has racked up 253 electoral votes, leaving him 17 shy of the 270 needed to win the White House.

Overnight on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 542.52 points higher at 28,390.18. The SP 500 rose 1.95 to end its trading day at 3,150.45 while the Nasdaq Composite surged 2.6 to close at 11,890.93. Thursday also marked the first time since 1982 that the Dow and SP 500 rose at least 1 in four straight sessions.

U.S. Federal Reserve said Wednesday stateside that it kept interest rates unchanged near zero, noting in its postmeeting statement that…

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