Asia stocks edged higher on Wednesday as investors weighed concerns over the spread of the coronavirus that has afflicted hundreds in China so far.
Mainland Chinese stocks made a turnaround to close higher after dropping more than 1% in the morning. The Shenzhen component added 1.08% to 11,072.06 and the Shenzhen composite rose 0.724% to 1,819.61. The Shanghai composite advanced 0.28% to around 3,060.75.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was 1.32% higher, as of its final hour of trading, after leading losses among major Asian markets on Tuesday.
Elsewhere in Asia, the Nikkei 225 rose 0.7% to close at 24,031.35 while the Topix index added 0.53% to end its trading day at 1,744.13.
The Kospi in South Korea also gained 1.23% to close at 2,267.25. The Bank of Korea said Wednesday the country’s economy grew 1.2% on a seasonally adjusted basis in the fourth quarter as compared with three months earlier. That was the fastest expansion since the third quarter of 2017, beating an estimated 0.8% growth from a Reuters poll.
Meanwhile, stocks in Australia rose as the S&P/ASX 200 closed 0.94% higher at 7,132.70.
Overall, the MSCI Asia ex-Japan index was 0.73% higher.