Asian stocks were mostly higher on Thursday following dovish comments from the U.S. Federal Reserve that helped send Wall Street shares to record highs overnight.
The Federal Reserve indicated that interest rates would stay low for some time at the conclusion of its two-day policy review, which sent the S&P 500 to a record finish. The central bank said it would cut monthly asset purchases from $45 billion to $35 billion next month, as expected, and alluded to a slightly faster pace of rate increases next year, while suggesting borrowing costs in the longer term would be lower than before.
"With that [the Fed] in mind, even Iraq missed headlines this time around and risk sentiment was largely improved. Adding to the positive sentiment were comments by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang who reinforced his country would maintain a minimum growth rate of 7.5 percent and ruled out a China hard landing," said Stan Shamu, market strategist at IG in a morning note.