Asian stocks hold gains as markets await Powell speech

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A man wearing a facial mask in Tokyo, Japan, January 4, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

HONG KONG, Aug 25 (Reuters) – Asian shares held onto their recent gains on Wednesday after last week’s pummelling, as global equities rebounded, though the focus for most asset classes was the U.S. Federal Reserve’s annual symposium on Friday.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan (.MIAPJ0000PUS) spent most of the day near flat, but was last up 0.34%, and about 4% higher so far this week.

Australia’s market (.AXJO) rose 0.22% and South Korea (.KS11) gained 0.16%, though Chinese blue chips fell 0.07%, and U.S. stock futures, the S&P 500 e-minis , were down 0.02%.

In early European trades, the pan-region Euro Stoxx 50 futures and FTSE futures were both up 0.04%

Japan’s Nikkei (.N225) was also flat, but a Reuters poll of analysts and fund managers showed Japanese shares are expected to recover from their eight-month low marked on Friday to near a 30-year…

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