SYDNEY (Reuters) - Asian shares scaled a fresh decade peak on Wednesday thanks to surging markets in Europe and America, as strong global growth and rising corporate profits lured hordes of investors into equities. An investor is reflected in a window displaying a board showing stock prices at the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) in Sydney, Australia, July 17, 2017. REUTERS/Steven Saphore MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS added 0.3 percent to Wednesday’s 1.3 percent rise - the biggest gain in eight months. The index has been on an uptrend most of this year, posting a monthly loss only once in 2017. For the year, it is up about 33 percent so far, on track for its best annual performance since a 68 percent jump in 2009. Robust global growth, low interest rates, strong corporate profits and expectations of U.S. corporate tax cuts have boosted equities around the world. “Emerging markets are flying and this is where traders are really generating outperformance,” said Chris Weston, Melbourne-based chief markets strategist at IG. “Asia, in particular, is looking super strong,” he added. “There is a genuine chase for performance from active money managers here.” Hong Kong's Hang Seng index .HSI is up 35.5 percent year-to-date while China's CSI 300 .CSI300 has returned 27.4 percent so far in 2017. On Wall Street, the S&P 500 .SPX and Nasdaq .IXIC advanced to record closing highs on Tuesday, while the Dow .DJI set a new intra-day high. Investors looking to eke out additional gains before the end of the year flocked to tech stocks, some fund managers said, with Apple Inc (AAPL.O), Google’s Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O) and Amazon.com (AMZN.O) rallying. While markets expects the Federal Reserve to hike rates next month, analysts say that is unlikely to dampen equities as financial markets remain accommodative. The U.S. Treasury yield curve flattened to its lowest in a decade as benign inflation and hunger for yield have supported longer-dated debt. Benchmark 10-year notes US10YT=RR have inched higher to yield 2.3559 percent. The 2-year Treasury, at 1.77 percent, is at the highest since 2008 US2YT=RR and is set to surpass Australia’s 2-year government bond yields AU2YT=RR for the first time since December 2000. In currencies, the U.S. dollar .DXY was generally on the backfoot against major rivals, falling for a second straight day on the Japanese yen JPY=. The Mexican peso MXN=D2 jumped to its highest in a month on conclusion of NAFTA talks. The euro EUR= trod water at $1.1741, drifting away from a recent one-month peak of $1.1860. In commodities, oil extended gains after data showed a bigger-than-expected draw in inventories and copper CMCU3 rose for a third straight day. [MET/L] U.S. light crude CLc1 added 25 cents to $57.08 while Brent crude oil LCOc1 was flat at $62.57, not far from a near 2-1/2 year peak of $64.65 touched earlier this month. Spot gold XAU= was up 0.1 percent to $1,281.68.
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Published Date: Nov 22, 2017 06:45 AM | Updated Date: Nov 22, 2017 06:45 AM