Cautious Fed lifts asian stocks to record high, investors eye earnings lift
Global stocks scaled record highs on Friday, with Asian equities rising for the fifth straight session, as signs the Federal Reserve will pursue a gradual rate tightening path and hopes of a strong earnings season lifted appetite for risk assets.
The MSCI World Index <.miwd00000pus> was marginally higher early on Friday, hitting a new all-time high. It is on track to end the week 1.6 percent higher.
MSCI`s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan <.miapj0000pus> advanced 0.25 percent to its highest level in two years. It`s set for a 3.2 percent gain for the week.
Japan`s Nikkei <.n225> added 0.2 percent, poised for a weekly rise of 1.05 percent.
Wall Street ended with gains on Thursday, with the major indexes <.dji><.spx><.ixic> up between 0.1 and 0.2 percent, as stocks basked in comments by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen that the central bank`s rate hikes could be gradual, given persistently low inflation despite an improving economy.
Expectations that S
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