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Asia: Stocks climb on Greece bailout as weaker yen buoys Japan


[SYDNEY] Asian stocks rose amid optimism about Greece's bailout agreement. A weaker yen buoyed Japanese shares, while gauges of equity volatility across the region fell.

Nomura Holdings Inc., Japan's biggest brokerage, jumped 4.7 per cent in Tokyo as securities firms led the advance on the country's Topix index. The Nikkei Stock Average Volatility Index tumbled 13 percent. The Shanghai Composite Index retreated 1.2 per cent, halting a three-day 13 per cent rally.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index gained 0.7 per cent to 143.39 as of 4.01 pm in Hong Kong. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index rose 1.1 per cent in New York on Monday, sealing its best three-day advance this year. News of the accord between Greece and its creditors on Monday came after the close of many equity markets in the Asia-Pacific region.

"Relief has set in that contagion from a Greek financial collapse has been avoided," Jasper Lawler, London-based market analyst at CMC Markets Plc, said in an e-mail. "The avoidance of Greece's exit from the eurozone, at least for the time being, should be enough to encourage investment flows back."

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras surrendered to European demands for immediate action to qualify for as much as 86 billion euros (S$129 billion) of aid he needs to keep his country in the euro area. The Greek parliament has until Wednesday to pass into law key creditor demands including streamlining value- added taxes, broadening the tax base to increase revenue and curbing pension costs.

Topix Gains Japan's Topix gained 1.6 per cent. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index added 1.9 per cent and New Zealand's NZX 50 Index rose 0.8 per cent. South Korea's Kospi index slipped 0.1 per cent. Singapore's Straits Times Index was little changed.

Markets in China declined, with the Shanghai Composite halting a three-day surge spurred by government measures to end a rout that wiped almost US$4 trillion from the market's value. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 0.4 per cent and the Hang Seng China Enterprises Index lost 1.4 per cent.

Chinese economic growth may have slowed to 6.8 per cent from 7 per cent in the first three months, according to the median estimate of a Bloomberg survey ahead of the report Wednesday. Data on industrial production, fixed-asset investment and retail sales for June are also due Wednesday. Industrial output probably rose 6 per cent from a year earlier, slowing from a 6.1 per cent gain in May, according to Bloomberg surveys.

E-mini futures on the S&P 500 slipped 0.1 per cent. With concern easing on the Greek crisis, US equity investors are retraining their focus toward economic data for clues as to the timeline for Federal Reserve monetary-policy tightening. Reports due this week include retail sales, industrial production, housing starts and consumer sentiment. JPMorgan Chase & Co, Wells Fargo & Co and Intel Corp are among S&P 500 members slated to report results this week.