February 16, 2016 - 12:50 PM EST
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Asian stocks mostly higher as oil output pact weighed

(AP) — Asian stock markets were mostly higher Wednesday as investors weighed the potential outcome of a preliminary agreement between
Saudi Arabia
to hold off on further increases in crude oil production, possibly alleviating a growing glut in supply.


Nikkei 225 slipped 0.2 percent to 16,020.34 as investors shrugged off data showing strong machinery orders in January.
Hong Kong's
Hang Seng gained 0.7 percent to 19,249.59 and the Shanghai Composite rose 0.4 percent to 2,847.23.
S&P/ASX 200 edged up 0.2 percent to 4,919.90 and
South Korea's
Kospi added 0.4 percent to 1,895.15.


-Saudi accord announced Tuesday will only take effect if other OPEC nations agree to it, and investors are not convinced they will, so
crude sank after a 12-percent rally on Friday.
markets were closed on Monday. Analysts say
probably won't sign on because it wants to raise output following its period of sanctions. The slump in oil prices has been one factor unnerving stock markets recently as a sign of weak global demand.

ANALYST VIEWPOINT: "The accord, on face value, suggests more can and will be done over the coming months. However, the current agreement will have little impact on oil markets and there are glaring holes in what has been announced," Evan Lucas of IG said in a commentary. "The market clearly also believes that this an accord to nowhere."

WALL STREET: Shares were broadly higher Tuesday, lifted by gains in retailers and manufacturers following upbeat news from

on bank lending. Strong quarterly results gave some company stocks a boost and investors worried a bit less about
. The Dow Jones industrial average added 222.57 points, or 1.4 percent, to 16,196.41. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 30.80 points, or 1.7 percent, to 1,895.58. The Nasdaq composite climbed 98.44 points, or 2.3 percent, to 4,435.96.


crude gained 27 cents to $29.31 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It lost 40 cents, or 1.4 percent, to $29.04 a barrel in
New York
on Tuesday. Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, climbed 58 cents to $32.76 a barrel. On Tuesday it lost $1.21, or 3.6 percent, to $32.18 a barrel in

CURRENCIES: The dollar fell to 113.89 yen from 114.23 yen the previous day. The euro rose to $1.1149 from $1.1127.

Follow Elaine Kurtenbach at twitter.com/ekurtenbach and bigstory.ap.org/journalist/elaine-kurtenbach

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Source: Equities.com News (February 16, 2016 - 12:50 PM EST)

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