The MSCI Asia Pacific Index added 0.5 percent by 9:23 a.m. in Tokyo, set for the highest close since Jan. 22. Japan’s Topix Index jumped 0.9 percent in a fourth day of gains as the yen held near a five-week low. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (SPX) futures rose 0.1 percent. Malaysia’s ringgit, the Korean won andThai baht climbed at least 0.1 percent. Australia’s dollar was near a three-month high as the central bank chief addressed lawmakers. Oil in New York rose 0.2 percent and rubber rose.
Korea’s Kospi Index rose 0.3 percent in a third day of gains, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index advanced 0.2 percent, on track for the highest close since June 2008. MSCi’s Asia Pacific stock measure is up 1.1 percent this week in a fourth straight week of gains, the longest rally since it posted four straight weekly jumps in September.
The yen is posting the worst performance against the greenback this week of 16 major currencies tracked by Bloomberg. Japan’s currency was little changed at 103.07 per dollar after sliding as much as 0.9 percent yesterday to 103.17, the weakest intraday level since Jan. 29.