- Japanese equities surged towards a new three-decade high, defying Asia's slump, although global market sentiment remained muted as investors waited for vital US inflation data.
- The broad Topix index surpassed its September intraday high to reach a 34-year high as a weaker yen boosted exporter stocks. The Nikkei 225 index gained more than 2% after reaching its highest level since 1990 on Tuesday. Their gains helped push an Asian shares index higher, despite reduced trading in countries such as mainland China and Hong Kong.
- US equities futures were largely unchanged. The S&P 500 fell 0.2% on Tuesday, while the tech-rich Nasdaq 100 rose by the same amount, continuing tech companies' return from strong selling last week.
- "With the market's expectation of an early Fed rate cut receding after the start of the new year, Japanese stocks remained firm on the back of expectations that the yen's depreciation against the dollar will support corporate earnings," JPMorgan's chief Japan equity strategist Rie Nishihara wrote in a note.
- Bitcoin surged more than 1% to roughly $46,167 following a period of volatility caused by speculation that the US Securities and Exchange Commission has approved spot-Bitcoin exchange traded funds. The SEC said in a statement that it had not yet approved the ETFs and that a conflicting post minutes earlier on the regulator's official X account was false.
- Treasury 10-year rates and the dollar remained stable in Asia trading. The yen fell more against the dollar as a severe slowdown in Japanese worker wage growth was seen restricting the Bank of Japan's capacity to depart its ultra-loose policy stance.