Asia-Pacific markets rise as SoftBank stock soars after share buyback plan; bitcoin touches record high

SINGAPORE — Shares in Asia-Pacific rose in Monday trade following overnight gains on Wall Street that took the major indexes to record closing highs. Meanwhile, bitcoin touched a record high.

Shares of Japanese conglomerate SoftBank Group soared 10.1% after the firm announced Monday a plan to buy back up to one trillion yen ($8.83 billion) of its own shares. SoftBank on Monday reported a 398 billion yen ($3.5 billion) net loss in the three-month period ended Sept. 30.

Japan’s broader Nikkei 225 gained 0.1% while the Topix index traded 0.08% lower.

Mainland Chinese stocks were mixed, with the Shanghai composite slipping fractionally while the Shenzhen component gained around 0.1%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index traded 0.1% higher.

South Korea’s Kospi shed 0.24%. In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 rose about 0.1%.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.25% higher.

Bitcoin surges to record high

Bitcoin rose to a record high in the morning of Asia trading hours, with the cryptocurrency trading at $67,650.59 as of 9:32 p.m. ET Monday, according to data from Coin Metrics. Ether also hit an all-time high, trading at $4,791.35.

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was at 94.039 after a recent decline from above 94.2.

The Japanese yen traded at 113.05 per dollar, stronger than levels above 113.5 seen against the greenback yesterday. The Australian dollar was at $0.7403, still off levels above $0.75 seen last week.

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Oil prices were higher in the morning of Asia trading hours, with international benchmark Brent crude futures up 0.08% to $83.50 per barrel. U.S. crude futures climbed 0.11% to $82.02 per barrel.

Wall Street record highs

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