ASIA MARKETS: Japan's Nikkei Stretches Winning Streak; Hong Kong Stocks In Recovery Mode

By Ese Erheriene Features Dow Jones Newswires

Hong Kong stocks bounce up more than 1%, Taiwan stocks slip

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Benchmarks in Japan and New Zealand on Friday narrowly notched their 14th straight day of gains, with the Nikkei's winning streak the longest in nearly 57 years.

The Nikkei rose less than 0.1%. New Zealand's benchmark NZX 50 reversed losses and also finished up by less than 0.1%.

Japan holds an election Sunday and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling coalition is projected to remain in power. Abe has helped push stocks up and the yen down by encouraging loose monetary policy. The dollar was last up 0.7% against the yen.

See:3 things investors need to know about Japan's snap election this Sunday (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/3-things-to-know-about-japans-snap-election-2017-10-10)

Investors however withdrew the most on record from Japanese equity funds in the week ending Oct. 18 following a series of multiyear highs for the Nikkei, according to fund-tracker EPFR Global.

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Money also fled Korean equity funds at the fastest clip since 2016 this week, according to EPFR. On Friday, the Kospi rose 0.7% to 2,489.54, another record closing high, amid gains in index heavyweight Samsung Electronics (005930.SE) .

In New Zealand, the NZX 50 slid as much as 1.2% after an agreement was reached Thursday to create a left-leaning government after last month's inconclusive election. That news sent the New Zealand dollar down, a drop that continued Friday with it falling below US$0.70 for the first time in five months.

But the NZX 50 eventually turned higher. Before its current win streak, the index's longest run of consecutive positive closes was seven.

Read:Here's why the kiwi dollar doesn't like New Zealand's young new leader (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/heres-why-the-kiwi-dollar-doesnt-like-new-zealands-young-new-leader-2017-10-19)

Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index climbed 1.2%. A late-session selloff Thursday put the benchmark down 1.9%, after a warning from the governor of China's central bank rattled investors. The Hang Seng has been one of the best performer world-wide this year, rising 29% through Friday.

Read:Chinese central bank official Zhou warns of sudden collapse in asset prices (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/chinese-central-bank-official-zhou-warns-of-sudden-collapse-in-asset-prices-2017-10-19)

Australia's S&P/ASX 200 edged up 0.2%, its eighth consecutive daily advance--the longest such streak in 15 months. The index has rebounded 4% in October, putting it on track for its best month of 2017.

Taiwan's Taiex bucked the trend, falling 0.3% as Apple suppliers Largan Precision (3008.TW) and Hon Hai Precision Industry (2317.TW) dropped after Apple's (AAPL) shares were down Thursday.

See:Apple stock suffers worst day in months (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/apple-stocks-worst-day-in-2-months-accounts-for-over-half-of-dows-drop-2017-10-19)

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 20, 2017 06:42 ET (10:42 GMT)