Most stock markets around the world turned in strong performances for 2017. And that's true for the major markets of the Asia Pacific. HPR's Bill Dorman has some regional highlights in today's Asia Minute.
The biggest regional winner of 2017 was Hong Kong—where the Hang Seng Index gained 36 percent.
Some market watchers caution that performance has more to do with some special cases in technology, and does not entirely reflect the fundamentals of the broader market. Tencent, the parent company of the Chinese language app “WeChat” more than doubled in value, inflating the return for the overall market index.
India’s Sensex rose 28 percent, while returns of 15 to 20-percent were common around the region.
Taiwan’s major index was up 15 percent. 17-percent for Singapore. 20 percent for Indonesia and 22 percent for Korea. Japan’s Nikkei Index gained 19-percent—closing at its highest year-end level in 26 years.
The Philippine Composite Index ended the year at a record high—up 25 percent for the year.
Thailand’s gains were about half that level—the SET up more than 12-percent.
Australia was a bit more subdued, the All Ordinaries gained nearly 8-percent for the year - most of that in the fourth quarter.
The Shanghai Composite peaked in November—managing to close the year up nearly 7 percent.
One of the biggest losers in world stock markets for 2017 was one of the biggest winners the year before.
The main stock index of Pakistan gained more than 40-percent in 2016…but closed 2017 with a loss of about 15-percent.