Asian markets were stronger Wednesday, shrugging off the burden of near $120-a-barrel oil and a record high euro, to continue a rally that has recovered all the ground lost last month. Shanghai surged over 4 percent, while Australia gained 1.6 percent.
The dollar touched a record low of $1.60 to the euro on Tuesday, before recoiling to $159.74 in early Asian trade on Wednesday. The weak greenback has helped buoy prices for dollar-denominated commodities such as oil.
Expectations that the European Central Bank would stay vigilant on inflationary pressures -- possibly meaning an even stronger euro -- helped push U.S. crude oil prices to a record high of $119.90 a barrel on Tuesday. Oil Asian markets were stronger Wednesday, shrugging off the burden of near-$120 a barrel oil and a record high euro to continue a rally that has recovered all the ground lost last month. pulled back to $118.05, still high enough to dent fuel-dependent stocks such as airlines. Korean Air, the world's top cargo carrier, Japan Airlines and Australia's Qantas were all lower.
But the surge in oil prices lifted energy firms such as Australia's Woodside Petroleum, China's PetroChina and Japan's Nippon Oil. Miners including Sumitomo Metal Mining rose on higher gold and copper prices.
The Nikkei 225 Average edged up by 0.2 percent, with oil's surge boosting energy plays and resource-linked firms such as trading house Mitsui & Co.. Rising global food prices helped lift agricultural stocks such as Nissan Chemical Industries, whose major profit-earners include agrochemicals, as well as Kubota, a major maker of farm equipment.