TOKYO – Asian stock markets were mixed Wednesday after Wall Street hit a new high as investors looked ahead to a Federal Reserve gathering for an update on U.S. stimulus.
Shanghai advanced while Hong Kong declined. Tokyo was unchanged.
Wall Street's benchmark S&P 500 index rose 0.2% after a quiet day in the market.
Investors are betting on an “absence of aggressive taper signals” when Fed officials speak Friday at their annual Jackson Hole meeting, said Mizuho Bank's Venkateswaran Lavanya in a report.
Some Fed officials say the U.S. central bank needs to start winding down bond purchases and other stimulus due to stronger hiring and higher inflation. Others want to wait for stronger economic data that show a recovery is established.
The Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.2% to 3,512.77 and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong fell 0.4% to 25,615.67. The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo was unchanged at 27,733.11.
The Kospi in Seoul shed 0.2% to 3,134.24 and the S&P 500 in Sydney advanced 0.3% to 7,521.60. New Zealand, Bangkok and Indonesia rose while Singapore retreated.
On Wall Street, the S&P 500 advanced to 4,486.23 for its second record high in two weeks.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.1% to 35,366.26. The Nasdaq composite climbed 0.5% to a record 15,019.80.
Banks and a mix of retailers, travel companies and restaurant chains accounted for much of the upward move. Those gains offset a slide in health care companies, household goods makers and technology stocks.
Investors bid up shares in homebuilders after the government reported that sales of new U.S. homes rose modestly last month.
In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude lost 48 cents to $67.06 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose $1.90 on Tuesday to $67.54. Brent crude, used as the price basis for international oils, shed 47 cents to $70.58. It rose $2.30 the previous session to $71.05.
The dollar advanced to 109.79 yen from Tuesday's 109.70 yen. The euro declined to $1.1738 from $1.1755.