Page last updated at 11:45 GMT, Thursday, 5 March 2009

Chinese plans boost Asian shares

Investor looks at share prices in Shanghai
The Shanghai Composite Index rose by more than 6% on Wednesday

Asian shares jumped on Thursday after Chinese premier Wen Jiabao gave details of his stimulus package and predicted 8% growth for China this year.

The Shanghai Composite Index closed up 1.0% while in Japan the Nikkei index ended the day 2% higher.

Mr Wen said spending on infrastructure, social schemes and tax cuts would send the budget deficit to a 60-year high.

Markets around the world rose on Wednesday on hopes that Chinese growth could alleviate the global downturn.

Manufacturing hopes

The Nikkei 225 closed up 142.5 points at 7,433.5 on Thursday, the first time it had risen for two days in a row since January.

The Shanghai Composite ended the day up 23.0 points at 2,221.1, having closed up 6.1% on Wednesday.

Wednesday's gains came after the key measure of Chinese manufacturing rose in February for the third month in a row.

"What is good for China is good for the world," said Paul Mendelsohn, chief investment strategist at Windham Financial Services.

China is one of the world's biggest economies and the second biggest oil consumer.

However, share markets in Hong Kong and Mumbai bucked the trend.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng index closed down 119.9 points, or 1.0% at 12,211.2 while Mumbai's Sensex closed down 248.6 points, or 2.9%, at 8,197.9, its lowest close since November 2005.

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Boston Globe Stocks regain some lost ground after jobs report - 1 hr ago
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