China Shares Climb as Factory Orders Grow

Chinese mainland markets finished up 1% on Tuesday, following a survey showing a pickup in China's factory activities for December.

The Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong sprang up 149.84 points, or 0.7%, to 22,150.40, while gaming shares fell following a decline in Macau gambling revenues. The Hong Kong benchmark had struggled to finish in positive territory for 2016, ending the year up just 0.4%

Macau government data showed on Sunday that gambling revenue fell 3.3% in 2016, which was in line with a poll of analysts' forecasts for a decline of around 3-4%. One bright spot in the data was that December revenue jumped 8% from the previous year.

Shares of Wynn Macau were down 0.3%, Sands China fell 0.7% and MGM China dropped 5.7%.

Australian markets were in the green, supported by broad gains across all sub-indexes. The benchmark is currently at a 16-month high, after ending 2016 up 7%, its best annual performance since 2013.

Shares of ANZ were up 1.7% at A$30.94 each, after the Australian lender announced it had reached a deal to sell a 20% stake in Shanghai Rural Commercial Bank to China COSCO Shipping and Shanghai Sino-Poland Enterprise Management Development.

Korean markets gained ground, likely due to the weaker Korean won, as it benefits exporters when overseas profits are repatriated.
South Korean automakers Hyundai Motor and its affiliate Kia Motors were both higher, up 2% at 153,000 won per share and 3.2% at 40,750 won per share respectively.

On Monday, both automakers announced a higher combined sales target in 2017 of 8.25 million vehicles globally, compared with its 2016 goal of 8.13 million vehicles, which the two automakers missed.

Moreover, the annual growth targets set for both automakers will be hard to achieve. For Hyundai, South Korean and other emerging markets remain stagnant, while for Kia, there is still some uncertainty about whether Kia's Mexican production will be able to be exported into the U.S., according to some commentators.

Markets in Japan and New Zealand were shuttered for holiday

CHINA

In Shanghai, the CSI 300 regained 32.15 points, or 1%, to 3,342.23

China's Caixin Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' index (PMI) rose to 51.9, compared with 50.9 in November and beating forecasts for 50.7, on the back of increased demand. A reading above 50 represents expansion in a sector, whereas a reading below 50 represents contraction.

The private manufacturing survey results came after figures at the weekend showed China's official PMI fell to 51.4 in December, slightly weaker than expectations.

In other markets

In Korea, the Kospi had the trading day off, finishing 2016 at 2,026.46

The Straits Times Index in Singapore recovered 18.21 points, or 0.6%, to 2,898.97

In Taiwan, the Taiex Index gained 19.38 points, or 0.2%, to 9,272.88

Australia's ASX 200 gained 67.38 points, or 1.2%, at 5,733.18