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Asia: Stocks rise second day as Japan jumps after yen tumbles

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[SINGAPORE] Asian stocks climbed for a second day, with the regional benchmark index heading for its highest close in a month, as a tumbling yen sent Japanese equities higher and US shares rallied to an all-time high.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.9 per cent to 131.80 as of 9:06 am in Tokyo, heading for its highest close since June 8. Japan's Topix index climbed 2.2 per cent after the yen fell by the most since October 2014 as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he planned to add fiscal stimulus following the ruling coalition's election victory.

Shares across the world are rallying on speculation policy makers will act to stem any fallout from the UK decision to leave the European Union, with the Bank of England tipped to cut rates this week. Investors have upped the probability of a Federal Reserve interest-rate increase by December to around 29 per cent following a stronger-than-expected employment report.

"The probability of a Fed rate hike this year remains surprisingly low even with the stronger jobs data," Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets Asia Pacific Pty in Sydney, said by phone.

"Accommodative monetary policies are supportive of share markets in the short term."

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South Korea's Kospi index added 0.1 per cent.

Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 0.4 per cent. New Zealand's S&P/NZX 50 Index was little changed.

Markets in Hong Kong and China have yet to start trading. Futures on the FTSE China A50 Index were little changed in most recent trading, while those on the Hang Seng Index advanced 0.8 per cent.

US Rally Futures on the S&P 500 were little changed. The US equity benchmark index added 0.3 per cent on Monday, extending a rally from Friday when the jobs report brightened the economic outlook.

Investors now turn their focus to earnings after Alcoa Inc unofficially kicked off US earnings season after the markets closed Monday. The 128-year-old aluminum producer reported earnings that exceeded analysts' estimates after profit from its car and jet parts businesses offset declines in prices for the metal.


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