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Tech Shares Rally in Asian Markets as Investors Wait for U.S. Election Result

Stocks in Asia-Pacific were higher in Thursday trade as investors continue to wait for the result of the U.S. election.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index led gains among the region’s major markets as it surged 2.72% by the afternoon. In Japan, the Nikkei 225 advanced 1.26% while the Topix index traded 0.98% higher. Over in South Korea, the Kospi gained 1.77%.

Mainland Chinese stocks were also higher, with the Shanghai composite up 0.88% while the Shenzhen component advanced 1.167%.

Meanwhile, shares in Australia rose, with the S&P/ASX 200 gaining 1.32%. Australia’s exports of goods and services rose 4% month-on-month in September on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to data released Thursday by the country’s Bureau of Statistics.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 1.76%.

Investor focus likely remained on the U.S. election, though a call in the presidential race is not expected anytime soon as several states could take until later this week to complete official tallies, according to officials.

Shares of tech firms in Asia surged in Thursday trade, following robust gains seen overnight on Wall Street for the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite.

In Hong Kong, shares of Alibaba listed in the city were up nearly 6%. The stock’s gain follows a more than 7% Wednesday tumble after the anticipated initial public offering of affiliate Ant Group was suspended amid regulatory concerns.

Chinese tech behemoth Tencent also saw its stock in Hong Kong gain 5.1%, while the Hang Seng Tech index jumped 4.83% . In Japan, shares of conglomerate Softbank Group soared 4.74%. Kakao Games shares in South Korea also popped 4.26%.

Oil prices were lower in the afternoon of Asian trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures down 1.7% to $40.53 per barrel. U.S. crude futures also slipped 1.71% to $38.48 per barrel.

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was last at 93.365 after seeing an earlier low of 93.343.

The Japanese yen traded at 104.28 per dollar after strengthening yesterday from levels above 104.8 against the greenback. The Australian dollar changed hands at $0.7167 following yesterday’s rise from levels below $0.712.