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Asia Markets: Asian stocks edge up ahead of Fed minutes

Asia-Pacific stocks rose broadly following overnight gains overseas, as investors await the release later Wednesday of minutes from this month’s U.S. Federal Reserve meeting.

But gains are largely muted, as are declines in the few markets whose benchmark indexes are lower.

“Markets [in Asia] are in a cautious phase,” said Ric Spooner, chief market analyst at broker CMC Markets.

While most investors aren’t anticipating a rate rise from next month’s Fed meeting, future increases are widely expected to exceed the quarter-points of 2015 and 2016.

“The rhetoric on inflation has turned among Fed officials, with many now expecting the firming to continue,” said Sue Trinh, head of Asia forex strategy at RBC Capital Markets.

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