Asian shares meander in thin trading

Tokyo, 13 Rabi’I,1437 AH, 24 December,2015, SPA — Asian shares meandered Thursday after early gains from an overnight surge in shares and oil prices faded in light holiday trading. Apart from Tokyo and Shanghai, most major regional markets will be closed on Friday, AP repoted.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 stock index fell 0.5 percent to 18,789.69 after spending most of the day in positive territory. The Shanghai Composite Index lost 1.1 percent to 3,594.79 and South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.4 percent to 1,990.65. But Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index added 0.4 percent to 22,138.13 and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 gained 1.3 percent to 5,207.60 in half-day Christmas Eve sessions. Markets in Southeast Asia, Taiwan and New Zealand were higher.
Share prices in Japan fell back on Thursday after Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda, in a speech to business leaders, commented on the difficulty of attaining the BOJ’s 2 percent inflation target without faster wage increases — a persistent challenge in a country where companies are reluctant to invest more given the declining population and slow growth in demand.
11:22 LOCAL TIME 08:22 GMT