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China leaves benchmark lending rates unchanged; Japan stocks briefly touch 33-year highs

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Investors watch computer screens displaying stock price figures at a stock exchange hall.

Jiang Sheng | Visual China Group | Getty Images

Asia-Pacific markets started the week higher after most major bourses ended lower in the previous session, while China left its benchmark lending rates unchanged.

The People’s Bank of China’s one-year loan prime rate — the peg for most household and corporate loans in China — was at 3.45%. The five-year benchmark loan rate — the peg for most mortgages — stood at 4.2%.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 briefly touched a 33-year high earlier in the session, but struggled to hold on to gains afterwards. The index was down 0.08%, while the Topix fell 0.31%. Investors will be watching out for Japan’s October inflation figures on Friday.

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Hong Kong stocks led declines in Asia-Pacific on Friday, as shares of Alibaba plunged after the Chinese e-commerce giant said it would not proceed with the full spinoff of its cloud group.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 1.83%, while China’s CSI 300 fell 0.23%.

South Korea’s Kospi rose about 0.75%, while the small-cap Kosdaq saw a larger gain of 1.42%.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.16%.

On Friday, the S&P 500 ended higher and clinched a third straight winning week amid a red-hot November rally.

The broader index added 0.13%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the day higher by 0.01%, while the Nasdaq Composite crept up by 0.08%.

The main U.S. indexes clocked their third straight positive week. The S&P 500 added 2.2%, while the Nasdaq jumped about 2.4%. The Dow closed the week with a 1.9% advance. This is the first three-week win streak for the Dow and S&P 500 since July, and the first since June for the Nasdaq.

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— CNBC’s Lisa Kailai Han and Brian Evans contributed to this report

Source: CNBC

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