BANGKOK (AP) — Asian shares were mostly higher on Tuesday after a worldwide slump for financial markets spurred by worries about how badly the omicron variant, inflation and other forces will hit the world economy.
Tokyo gained nearly 2% and other benchmarks in Asia also were higher.
Much of the concern over the outlook has been driven by the omicron variant of coronavirus. Cases have skyrocketed in Europe and in the U.S., federal health officials have announced it accounted for 73% of new infections last week, a nearly six-fold increase in only seven days.
In Asia, cases of coronavirus have surged in Australia and South Korea, as governments tighten precautions to prevent or curb outbreaks.
Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index rose 2% to 28,496.83 and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong added 0.3% to 22,798.23. In Seoul, the Kospi gained 0.3% to 2,972.79, while the Shanghai Composite index picked up 0.2% to 3,601.53. In Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 climbed 0.4% to 7,323.90.
Shares fell around the world on Monday. Stocks of oil producers helped lead the way lower after the price of U.S. crude fell 3.7% on concerns the newest coronanvirus variant could lead factories, airplanes and drivers to burn less fuel.