Asia Markets: Asian markets mostly rise, following Wall Street’s lead

Asian markets were mostly higher in early trading Wednesday, following gains on Wall Street after stocks started the week down on fears of an escalating trade war between the U.S. and China.

President Donald Trump on Tuesday downplayed tensions, calling the situation a “little squabble” and stressing what a good relationship he has with China’s President Xi Jinping. But he also hinted at imposing 25% tariffs on another $325 billion of Chinese goods — essentially everything China exports to the U.S.

Read: China’s economic activity cools in April

Japan’s Nikkei

NIK, +0.58%

  was last about flat. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index

HSI, +0.77%

  rose 0.7% while the Shanghai Composite

SHCOMP, +1.91%

  advanced about 1%. South Korea’s Kospi

SEU, +0.53%

  advanced 0.6%, and Taiwan’s Taiex

Y9999, +0.39%

  jumped 0.8%, while benchmark indexes in Singapore

STI, -0.24%

  and Indonesia

JAKIDX, -1.05%

  were about flat. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200

XJO, +0.71%

  rose 0.5%.

Among individual stocks, Nissan Motor

7201, -6.47%

  plunged after posting its worst fiscal-year earnings in 11 years Tuesday, and warned of more losses to come. Elsewhere in Tokyo trading, Takeda Pharmaceutical

4502, -7.82%

  sank, as did Yahoo Japan

4689, -3.12%

 . In Hong Kong, food processor WH Group

0288, +5.14%

 , which has been battered amid a swine fever outbreak, rose. Insurer AIA Group

1299, +2.58%

  and oil producer CNOOC

0883, +2.12%

  also gained. LG Electronics

066570, +1.40%

  rose in South Korea, as did Taiwan Semiconductor

2330, +0.20%

  in Taiwan. BHP

BHP, +1.86%

  advanced in Australia, along with Rio Tinto

RIO, +2.17%

  and Beach Energy

BPT, +3.31%

 .

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