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Asian shares edge higher on hopes for Greek deal

Published on Nov 26, 2012 9:50 AM

TOKYO (REUTERS) - Asian shares rose on Monday on the hope Greece can avoid a near-term bankruptcy, with euro-zone finance ministers meeting later in the day, but a regional Spanish vote favouring separatist parties clouded Madrid's push for fiscal austerity.

Expectations that an agreement will be reached soon to disburse crucial aid for debt-stricken Greece, and Germany's Ifo business climate index rising for the first time in seven months in November, boosted the euro and riskier assets broadly and reduced appetite for the safe-haven dollar on Friday.

"If there really is an agreement on Greece today, the euro could rise above US$1.3 against the dollar and 107 against the yen," Mr Masafumi Yamamoto, chief FX strategist at Barclays in Tokyo, said in a research note.

The euro was at US$1.2966, hovering near a three-week high of US$1.2991 reached on Friday, and traded at a seven-month peak of 107.10 yen on Monday.

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