Stock market today: Tokyo gains, most Asian markets closed

Asian markets are closed for May 1, but shares have advanced in Tokyo and Sydney.

Stock market today: Tokyo gains, most Asian markets closed

Tokyo and Sydney saw their shares rise on Monday, while the majority of Asian markets were closed due to May Day holidays.

Labor Day celebrations around the world likely limited market reaction to an expected delay by U.S. regulatory authorities on what to do about First Republic Bank.

First Republic, a San Francisco-based bank, has been struggling since the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank in March and Signature Bank early that month. Investors and depositors are worried the bank will not be able to survive as a separate entity much longer.

First Republic is seen as most likely to fail due to the high number of uninsured depositors and low interest rates. The regulators were believed to be trying to sell the entire bank or a part of it before Monday's reopening.

Stocks of the bank closed Friday at $3.51, which is a fraction from $170 per share a year earlier.

Stephen Innes, of SPI Asset Management, said in a comment that "a quiet Monday opened shaded by a vacation feel with an undertone that no news is good news on the Frist Republic Front."

In Asian trading on Monday, the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo rose 0.7% to 29,056.25 while the S&P/ASX 200 index in Sydney climbed 0.6% to 7,352.20. The other markets in the region are closed.

The S&P 500 rose 0.8% on Friday to 4,169.48. It still managed to secure a second consecutive month of gains despite some big swings in the market this week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.8% to 34 098.16 and the Nasdaq Composite gained 0.7% at 12,226.58.

Exxon Mobil helped to lift the market after its 1.3% rise. It reported higher profit and revenue than expected for the most recent quarter.

Intel rose 4% following a report that showed a smaller loss than expected, and stronger revenue in the most recent quarter. Mondelez International (the food giant that makes Oreos and Ritz) rose 3.9%, surpassing Wall Street's expectations. The company also increased its revenue and earnings forecasts for the entire year.

These earnings helped offset a 4% decline for Amazon. The company, despite reporting a higher profit and revenue than expected for the last quarter, still weighed heavily on markets. Analysts noted a slowdown of revenue growth in its AWS cloud computing division.

The economy is slowing down under the pressure of higher interest rates intended to control inflation. Although most companies have exceeded expectations so far in this reporting season, these were low due to forecasts that the economic climate may be heading into recession.

According to recent economic reports traders bet that the Federal Reserve will increase interest rates at its meeting next week, and perhaps again in June.

According to a report published on Friday, the Fed's preferred inflation measure came in at a level that was close to the expectations for March but still well above its target. The report also said that wages increased more than expected during the first quarter of the year, which could have contributed to the inflation.

After a series of increases since the beginning of last year, the Fed has increased its overnight key interest rate to its highest since 2007. They've all slowed down the economy's annual growth to an estimated 1,1% at the beginning of this year.

Also, they've caused cracks to appear in the banking system.

Federal Reserve released Friday a report blaming Silicon Valley Bank's failure on a combination poor bank management and lax government oversight.

Other trading Monday saw the New York Mercantile Exchange's electronic trading of U.S. benchmark oil drop 63 cents per barrel to $76.15. On Friday, it gained $2.02.

Brent crude, which is the international standard for pricing, lost 61 cents per barrel to reach $79.72.

The U.S. Dollar rose from 136.24 Japanese yen to 136.75 yen. The euro fell to $1.1006 versus $1.0023.