Asian stocks mixed after Wall St rises on tech gains

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A man walks past a bank's electronic board showing the Hong Kong share index at Hong Kong Stock Exchange Tuesday, March 23, 2021. Asian stock markets were mixed Tuesday after Wall Street rose on gains for tech stocks and reassurance by the U.S. Federal Reserve of support for an economic recovery. (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)

TOKYO – Asian stock markets were mixed Tuesday after Wall Street rose on gains for tech stocks and reassurance by the U.S. Federal Reserve of support for an economic recovery.

Tokyo and Sydney advanced while Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seoul retreated.

Overnight, Wall Street's benchmark S&P 500 index rose 0.7% as big technology companies led stocks broadly higher. Amazon, Apple, and Microsoft advanced.

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said that while the economy was improving, a recovery is “far from complete." In testimony to Congress, he said the Fed “will continue to provide the economy the support it needs for as long as it takes.”

Powell “kept markets happy” by saying "there was still a long way to go” before tighter monetary policy is justified, Robert Carnell of ING said in a report.

The Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.6% to 3,421.88 while the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo rose 0.2% to 29,243.44.

The Hang Seng in Hong Kong fell 1% to 28,586.11. Chinese search engine operator Baidu Inc. rose 1% on its first trading day after the company joined the Hong Kong exchange and raised $3.1 billion in a share sale.

The Kospi in Seoul shed 0.4% to 3,023.54 while Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 gained 0.1% to 6,761.10. New Zealand and Singapore advanced.