Asian markets struggle to track Wall St rally, eyes on US jobs

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HONG KONG – Asian markets were mixed Friday following the previous day’s gains, with eyes on the release of key US jobs data later in the day, while investors are also assessing the outlook for central bank monetary policy in the face of surging inflation.

Equities around the world enjoyed a healthy run-up Thursday after the Federal Reserve finally announced its plan for tapering the vast bond-buying programme that has provided crucial support since it was put in place at the start of the pandemic.

The news removed a lot of uncertainty about officials’ response to a spike in inflation that is expected to last a lot longer than previously thought and follows moves in other countries to step back from their ultra-easy measures as the world economy recovers.

However, the Bank of England’s decision Thursday not to lift rates shocked traders, who had taken recent indications from boss Andrew Bailey that it would do so.

While its board signalled a rise…

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