Most Asian Stocks Gain

Most Asian stocks rose, led by financial companies, as a share sale by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. eased concern that the global credit crisis will deepen.

Macquarie Group Ltd. surged 11 percent in Sydney after Warren Buffett'sBerkshire Hathaway Inc. said it will buy $5 billion of Goldman stock. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. rose 4.2 percent in Tokyo after saying it will purchase as much as 20 percent of Morgan Stanley. Honda Motor Co. and Sony Corp. dropped at least 2 percent on concern demand for cars and consumer electronics will fall as economic growth slows.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index
was down 0.1 percent at 116.23 as of 7:40 p.m. in Tokyo. About five stocks gained for every four that fell.

Standard & Poor's 500 Index futures rose 1.4 percent today. Goldman, which this week transformed itself from the biggest U.S. securities firm to the fourth-largest bank by assets, advanced 7.8 percent in after-hours trading in New York after saying Berkshire will purchase $5 billion of perpetual preferred shares.

Japan's Nikkei 225
Stock Average rose 0.2 percent to 12,115.03. The country's markets were shut yesterday. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index gained 1.2 percent, led by National Australia Bank Ltd., the nation's biggest by assets.

The S&P 500 Index dropped 1.6 percent yesterday, capping a two-day decline of 5.3 percent, as Congress members expressed skepticism about Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson's $700 billion bank bailout plan, which Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said is critical for preventing a recession.

U.K. stocks fell for a third day, led by banks on concern the U.S. Congress will hold up a $700 bank bailout plan. The benchmark FTSE 100 index decreased 20.52, or 0.4 percent, to 5,114.93 at 12:59 a.m. in London.

India's stocks rose for the first time in three days after Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said it will raise capital and Japanese banks bought stakes in other U.S. lenders, easing concerns the global credit crisis will deepen. The Bombay Stock Exchange's Sensitive Index, or Sensex, added 122.21, or 0.9 percent, to 13,692.52 at the 4:15 p.m. local time close.

China's stocks
rose today. The CSI 300 relative value Index, which tracks yuan-denominated A shares listed on China's two exchanges, added 16.90, or 0.79 percent, to 2,164.51 at the close, rebounding from yesterday's 3.8 percent decline.,
9/24/2008 5:23:00 AM