Most Asian stock market indices were trading higher on Monday (20 February), with the Shanghai Composite up 0.73% at 3,225.39 as of 5.40am GMT, following a positive Wall Street close on Friday.
Major Wall Street indices touched record highs last week amid US President Donald Trump's tax reform promises. The positive sentiment is said to have been carried forward to Asian stock markets as investors await more details of Trump's tax reforms and other economic policies.
"President Trump promised a 'phenomenal' tax announcement in 2-3 weeks, so as the clock ticks down to some form of announcement, market inertia is set to reign," Ray Attrill, global co-head of FX strategy at the National Australia Bank, was quoted as saying by CNBC.
Vishnu Varathan, head, economics and strategy at Mizuho Bank, added that stock markets were up against "Donald Disconnect", which he defined as "bets on economic rebound without accompanying reflations".
Japan reported a slowdown in export growth in January, rising 1.3% year-on-year, lower than both the median estimate of 4.7% annual increase and the 5.4% on-year increase seen in December 2016.
According to Reuters, the slower pace of growth was amid decline in shipments to the US, Lunar New Year holidays and concerns over Trump's protectionism policies. The numbers had no effect on Asian stock markets.
Indices in the region were trading as follows at 6am GMT:
|Hong Kong||Hang Seng Index||24,143.13||Up||0.46%|
On 17 February, the FTSE 100 closed 0.30% higher at 7,299.96, while the S&P 500 index closed 0.17% higher at 2,351.16.
Among commodities, oil prices were trading in the green. As of 12.49am EST, WTI crude oil was up 0.19% at $53.50 (£43.06) a barrel, while Brent crude was trading 0.22% higher at $55.93 a barrel.