Business

Asian shares higher despite China data

Asian shares rose on Wednesday despite inflation data from China suggesting that the economy is slowing.

China's inflation rate fell to 1.6% in September, below expectations and the lowest rate since January 2010.

But stock markets across Asia shrugged off the downbeat news. In Japan, the benchmark Nikkei 225 index closed up 137.01 points at 15,073.52.

In Hong Kong, the benchmark Hang Seng index ended up 92.08 points at 23,140.05.

On the mainland, the Shanghai Composite finished the session up 14.20 points, or 0.6%, at 2,373.67 as the inflation data spurred talk of Beijing stepping in with stimulus measures to boost the economy.

Australian shares were up after a survey showed that consumer sentiment rose in October after a sharp fall the previous month.

The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 ended 38.18 points higher at 5,245.6.

In South Korea, the Kospi index ended lower after the central bank cut interest rates for the second time in three months.

The Bank of Korea cut its key rate to 2% from 2.25%, and also downgraded its growth forecasts for the economy for this year and next, citing slower than expected improvements in capital expenditure and consumer spending.

The benchmark Kospi closed down 3.34 points at 1,925.91.

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