Stocks mostly rise amid Japanese election, US tax hopes

Global stocks mostly rose on Monday after a parliamentary election victory by Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's party, which had promised stability and growth, and on hopes for U.S. tax reform.

KEEPING SCORE: France's CAC 40 was up 0.3 percent at 5,390, while Germany's DAX rose 0.1 percent to 13,000. Britain's FTSE 100 was up 0.1 percent at 7,530. Dow futures were 0.1 percent higher and the S&P 500 futures were flat.

JAPAN ELECTION: Abe's ruling Liberal Democratic Party scored a win in the nationwide parliamentary election Sunday, partly because of a splintered opposition. But a new pacifist opposition party made dramatic gains, underscoring voters' doubts about Abe's agenda for revising Japan's war-renouncing constitution and strengthening the military.

ASIA'S DAY: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 gained 1.1 percent to close at 21,696.65. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.2 percent to 5,894.00. South Korea's Kospi was flat at 2,490.05. Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 0.6 percent to 28,322.08, while the Shanghai Composite inched up nearly 0.1 percent to 3,380.70. India's Sensex was flat at 32,399.55 and shares in Southeast Asia were mixed.

ANALYST VIEWPOINT: "While the win by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's Liberal Democratic Party had been widely expected, the strong mandate awarded via the landslide win made all the difference for markets this morning," Jingyi Pan of IG said in a commentary.

TRUMP TAXES: Investor sentiment has gotten a boost from President Donald Trump's plan to slash corporate taxes and make other business-friendly changes to U.S. tax laws. Under the administration's plan, the first major overhaul of the tax code in three decades, corporations would see their top tax rate cut from 35 percent to 20 percent. Should the reforms be approved, interest rates are also likely to move higher, which will benefit banks and other financial companies.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude added 17 cents to $52.01 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. On Friday it gained 33 cents. Brent crude, used to price international oils, fell 13 cents to $57.62 a barrel.

CURRENCIES: The dollar strengthened to 113.83 yen from 113.34 yen late Friday in Asia. The euro fell to $1.1737 from $1.1802.


AP Business Writer Yuri Kageyama can be reached at

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