Asian Shares Rise After China Trade Data

Asian stocks were moving higher on Tuesday after China reported better-than-expected trade data for the month of March.

In yuan terms, China's imports rose an annual 2.4 percent in the month, beating expectations for a 7 percent drop. Imports declined 2.4 percent in February.

Exports fell 3.5 percent compared to the expected slide of 12.8 percent. Exports declined by 15.9 percent in February. The trade surplus for the month narrowed to CNY 130 billion from CNY 158.5 billion in February.

China's Shanghai Composite index was up about 0.8 percent after the release of trade data. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index also traded up around 0.8 percent as traders returned to their desks after a long holiday weekend.

Japan's Nikkei index jumped 1.9 percent to climb above 19,400 on hopes the coronavirus outbreak may be peaking in hard-hit cities around the world.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday said that he was very close to completing a plan to reopen the country. However, some state governors have signaled that the decision on when to restart businesses lay with them.

Australia's benchmark S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.7 percent to hover near a one-month high, with gold miners such as Newcrest, Norther Star Resources and Evolution Mining surging 8-11 percent, after gold prices hit over seven-year highs on safe-haven demand.

Afterpay soared as much as 17 percent. The buy now, pay later platform said the coronavirus crisis hasn't hampered its strong growth and it has no need to raise more money in the foreseeable future.

New Zealand's NZX-50 index and South Korea's Kospi were up around 1.7 percent each.

The dollar extended losses after the U.S. Federal Reserve announced a massive lending program to get liquidity into the hands of small to middle-market businesses. Oil prices continued to climb after major oil producers agreed on Sunday to slash oil output by 9.7 million barrels per day.

U.S. stocks ended mixed overnight as investors braced for a painful earnings season due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 1.4 percent and the S&P 500 gave up 1 percent after three days of gains.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq rose half a percent as New York Governor Andrew Cuomo declared that "the worst is over" but the virus outbreak will not be "over" until a vaccine was available.

European markets were closed for Easter Monday holiday.

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