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Asian markets have moved lower again overnight, initially led by the Nikkei on further profit taking but that bourse has sharply rallied in the last hour of trading to close slightly higher, prompted by renewed Yen weakness settling at just above the 88.5 level versus the US dollar, with investors awaiting the BOJ's meeting next week.

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Asia markets trading sharply lower this morning, with Japan's Nikkei a notable loser down 2.5% after making 32 month highs yesterday. The yen is again stronger this morning just above the 88 level, with that exporters were hit hardest with the autos leading the move lower.

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No real direction in Asian markets this morning with the Nikkei rising 70bps after being closed yesterday, a good performance considering comments from the country's finance minister suggesting stimulus measures may not be as large as expected.

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European equity markets currently around 40bps higher, buoyed by China rising 3% amid positive rhetoric suggesting permitting fresh foreign investment, meanwhile the IMF’s Lagarde says that confidence has returned to the region and the German finance minister says that the region is over the worst of the crisis. Further strength seen in financials and autos better on company specific headlines, Industrials mixed so far.

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It’s been a while since I last wrote, and markets in all fairness have lacked an element of predictability, however there are a few levels to watch out for major equity indices that aren’t too far away from current levels.

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U.S stocks rose for a second week, as the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index climbed to the highest level in five years, amid optimism about fourth-quarter corporate earnings and better-than-estimated data on Chinese exports.

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Asian stocks swung between gains and losses as China’s inflation accelerated and Japan approved 10.3 trillion yen ($116 billion) of stimulus measures

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Asian stocks climbed, with the regional benchmark index headed for its highest close in 17 months, as China’s export data topped estimates and Japanese carmakers rallied on a weaker yen.

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Chinese automakers advanced after Credit Suisse Group AG forecast demand for cars in the world’s second-largest economy will increase between 8 percent and 10 percent annually in the next three to five years.

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China’s B shares rallied for a 15th day, the longest stretch of gains in two decades, on speculation more companies will move their listings to Hong Kong in an effort to lure investors and boost their valuations.

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Strength in U.S. stocks sent the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index to the highest level since December 2007, after data showed employers added workers in December at about the same pace as in November.

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Asian stocks outside Japan fell, paring the biggest weekly advance in more than a month, after Federal Reserve policy makers said they will probably end their $85 billion monthly bond-purchase program sometime this year.

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Asian stocks rose, pushing a regional equities index to its highest level in 17 months, after an expansion of U.S. manufacturing and China’s services industries fuelled optimism in the global economic recovery.

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Asian stocks rose, heading for their highest close since August 2011, as the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation averting some of $600 billion in automatic tax increases and spending cuts About five stocks climbed for each that fell on the MSCI Asia Pacific excluding Japan Index as all 10 industry groups rose during the year’s first trading session. Basic-material producers and technology companies led the advance. Equity markets in Japan and mainland China are closed today and tomo

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U.S. stocks fell sharply last night after a two-session rally as negotiations to avoid deep spending cuts and tax hikes seemed to hit an especially rocky spot.

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