Most Asian equities rallied Tuesday and Brent crude hit a more than seven-year high as optimism over the global recovery returned to trading floors, though concerns about the end of long- running central bank support tempered sentiment.
After an almost uninterrupted rally from the dark early days of the pandemic, world markets are showing signs of levelling out as global finance chiefs shift from economy-boosting largesse to measures aimed at reining in inflation.
Still, there is an expectation that stocks will continue to enjoy further gains this year as countries reopen and people grow more confident to travel, especially as studies suggest the now more prevalent Omicron coronavirus variant appears to be milder and as vaccines are rolled out. Analysts are also keeping an eye on the corporate earnings season that is getting under way, with hopes that firms can match their stellar performances last year.
With Wall Street closed, Asian markets recovered slightly from Monday's travails as investors took some of their lead from Europe, where London, Paris and Frankfurt put in strong performances.
Tokyo was among the best performers, rallying 0.9 percent in the morning, while Hong Kong, Shanghai, Sydney, Singapore, Taipei and Manila were also up.