Asia shares gain ahead of key data; oil recovers

A currency trader works near the screens showing the Korea Composite Stock Price Index (KOSPI), left, and the foreign exchange rate between U.S. dollar and South Korean won at the foreign exchange dealing room in Seoul, South Korea, Monday, Nov. 12, 2018. Asian markets were mostly higher on Monday ahead of key economic data, such as industrial production figures from China and Japan later in the week. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

SINGAPORE — Asian markets were mostly higher on Monday ahead of key economic data, such as industrial production figures from China and Japan later in the week.

KEEPING SCORE: Japan's Nikkei 225 added 0.2 percent to 22,284.23. Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 0.5 percent to 25,716.59. The Shanghai Composite index edged 0.6 percent higher to 2,613.82. Australia's S&P-ASX 200 gained 0.1 percent to 5,925.80. But the Kospi in South Korea dipped 0.3 percent to 2,080.66. Shares rose in Thailand but were lower in Singapore, Indonesia and the Philippines.

WALL STREET: Technology and internet stocks sank Friday on Chinese growth worries and weak forecasts by companies including video game maker Activision Blizzard and chipmaker Skyworks Solutions. The S&P 500 index lost 0.9 percent to 2,781.01. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.8 percent to 25,989.30, and the Nasdaq composite gave up 1.6 percent to 7,406.90. The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks tumbled 1.8 percent to 1,549.49.

REGIONAL GROWTH: Traders are looking forward to industrial production data from China and Japan on Wednesday. They will be looking for indications of a recovery for the Chinese economy, where auto sales fell for the fourth straight month in October. Concerns over China's softening economic growth and its simmering trade dispute with the U.S. have weighed on global stock markets.

ANALYST'S TAKE: "The onslaught of worries over tightening conditions and looming trade tension escalations still have its grip on Asia markets. Alongside the poor leads from last Friday's movements, a soft start is in store for regional indices," Jingyi Pan of IG said in a market commentary.

ENERGY: Oil futures recovered on news that major producers planned to reduce output. Saudi Arabia's energy minister Khalid al-Falih said Sunday that the kingdom will reduce exports by around 500,000 barrels a day from November to December. Russian oil minister Alexander Novak said his country was open to cuts, at a meeting of oil producers in Abu Dhabi. Benchmark U.S. crude bounced back from 10 days of losses, adding 57 cents to $60.76 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract shed 48 cents to $60.19 in the previous session. Brent crude, used to price international oils, picked up 85 cents to $71.03. It lost 47 cents to $70.18 in London.

CURRENCY: The dollar strengthened to 113.99 yen from 113.83 yen late Friday. The euro fell to $1.1329 from $1.1345.

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