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Asian stock markets rise as hopes rise for new measures from China to promote growth
BANGKOK (AP) ' Hopes China will announce new measures to boost economic growth helped push Asian stock markets higher Tuesday.
Investors were encouraged by weekend statements from the Chinese premier, who promised to spur growth in the world's second-largest economy, a shift from previous rhetoric about curbing inflation. Gains on Wall Street after a week in the doldrums also lifted sentiment.
Japan's Nikkei 225 index rose 1 percent to 8,722.46 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 1 percent to 19,117.54. South Korea's Kospi climbed 1.2 percent to 1,821.62.
Recent renewed efforts to prevent nearly bankrupt Greece from sliding into default and exiting the euro currency union have also provided a slight relief to traders.
A weekend summit in Washington among leaders of the world's major advanced economies provided little in the way of tangible results. But the G-8 countries issued a statement affirming their desire for Greece to remain in the euro, raising hopes of decisive action to prevent an exit.
"Markets are by no means out of the woods however, and much uncertainty will remain ahead of Greece's election in just less than a month," analysts at Credit Agricole CIB in Hong Kong said in an email.
"Although some respite from selling pressure will have come as a relief there's a long road ahead, with risk assets set to come under renewed pressure over coming weeks."
Elsewhere, Australia's S&P/ASX 200 was 0.7 percent higher at 4,102.10. Benchmarks in Singapore, Taiwan, mainland China, New Zealand and Indonesia also rose.
U.S. stocks ended a weeklong losing streak Monday after shares of Apple ' the world's most valuable company ' climbed nearly 6 percent. That was its second-biggest climb of the year and came after analysts said they expect its iPhone business to continue to do well.
The Dow rose 1.1 percent to 12,504.48. The Standard & Poor's 500 rose 1.6 percent to 1,315.99. The Nasdaq composite index rose 2.5 percent to 2,847.21.
Benchmark oil for June delivery was up 6 cents to $92.63 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose $1.09 to settle at $92.57 in New York on Monday.
In currencies, the euro slipped to $1.2786 from $1.2793 late Monday in New York. The euro hit a four-month low against the dollar on Thursday. The dollar was slightly down at 79.34 yen from 79.36 yen.