Asian markets climb after upbeat Fed comments

Guy Bentley
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Asian markets are up after positive comments from both the Federal Reserve and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, with the situation in Iraq failing to dampen optimism.

The US central bank has indicated that rates will remain low for some time to come after a two-day policy review. The remarks sent the S&P 500 to a record high. The Fed announced it will reduce monthly asset purchases from $45bn to $35bn next month.

"We continue expect the US economy to do well enough for the Fed to end the asset purchases in October and start gradually hiking rates in Q2 2015. However, today’s slightly more dovish tone was a reminder that the Fed would react if growth disappointed or inflation failed to follow the projected gradual upward path", said Berenberg senior economist Christian Schulz.

Premier Li said that China would experience "medium to high-level growth in the long run, with the government taking action to hit its minimum growth target of 7.5 per cent.

However, fears have been raised that Argentina may enter technical default, with the economy ministry announcing that payments to holdout bond investors due on 30 June is impossible.

The Nikkei is up 1.5 per cent on the back of comments from Bank of Japan board member Yoshihisa Morimoto that exports will rebound. Meanwhile, Reuters Tankan survey showed manufacturers confidence holding steady in June.