Government shutdown: IMF, world heaves sigh of relief as US avoids debt default

BEIJING (AP) -- The International Monetary Fund appealed to Washington for more stable management of the nation's finances as Asian stock markets rose after U.S. leaders agreed to avoid a default and end a 16-day government shutdown.

"World heaves sigh of relief as U.S. barely averts debt default," said the Times of India newspaper in a headline.

The Tokyo stock market rose as much as 1.1 percent on Thursday. Markets in China, Hong Kong and South Korea also gained.

Asian companies and investors had expressed confidence Washington would avoid a default. But some sold Treasurys or put off buying stocks that might be exposed to a U.S. downturn.

IMF managing director Christine Lagarde appealed to Washington to "reduce uncertainty" by raising its debt limit "in a more durable manner."

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