Renewed hopes that Opec nations would cut production led to a surge in oil prices overnight Reuters/Rick Wilking

Most Asian stock market indices were trading higher on Wednesday (16 November), except the Shanghai Composite, which was down 0.14% at 3,202.62 as of 5am GMT. This followed a positive Wall Street close and an uptick in oil prices overnight.

Crude oil surged by about 6% on Tuesday amid renewed hopes that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) would cut crude production, which in turn would help stabilise prices of the commodity. According to reports, this boosted American energy stocks that led the Wall Street higher.

With regards to expectations of a Fed rate rise – which had led stock markets lower recently – analysts said the fears were eased after the US posted strong sales data overnight. However, they added that any move by the Fed should not adversely affect markets going forward.

"The December interest rate hike is very much a done deal now and what matters the most for us is to listen to the Fed statement carefully (in December) as this will provide enough clues for future interest rate hike trajectory," Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst from ThinkMarkets was quoted as saying by CNBC.

Indices in the region were trading as follows at 5.07am GMT:

Hong KongHang Seng Index22,432.67Up0.49%
JapanNikkei 22517,870.26Up1.14%
South KoreaKOSPI1,983.05Up0.79%
AustraliaS&P/ASX 2005,329.60Up0.06%

Overnight (15 November), the FTSE 100 closed 0.59% higher at 6,792.74, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 0.29% at 18,923.06.

Among commodities, Brent Crude was trading higher by 0.02% at $46.96 (£37.68) a barrel, WTI crude oil was trading 0.22% lower at $45.71 a barrel as of 5.16am GMT.