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Asia-Pacific markets gain confidence from US gains
Asia-Pacific markets gain confidence after stocks in Europe and US close higher
By The Associated Press

SYDNEY (AP) ' Asia-Pacific markets continue to gain confidence after stocks in Europe and the U.S. closed higher on a surge in demand for cars and planes in July that offered an unexpectedly upbeat sign of life in the U.S. economy.

Japan's Nikkei 225 index opened 114 points, or 1.3 percent, higher on Thursday at 8,756 points, while Australia's S&P/ASX 200 index opened up 25 points, or 0.6 percent, at 4,193 points.

New Zealand was one of the first markets in the world to open Thursday and its benchmark NZX 50 index added 14 points, or 0.4 percent, to 3,301 points.

Michael McCarthy, chief strategist at Sydney-based stockbroker CMC Markets, says the resignation on Wednesday of Steve Jobs as Apple Inc. chief executive is unlikely to impact markets outside the United States, which is the only country where Apple shares are traded.

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