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Australia stocks hit record high, most other Asia-Pacific markets set to decline

This is CNBC's live blog covering Asia-Pacific markets.

Australia stocks hit a record high Thursday, while most other Asia-Pacific markets looked set to fall even though Wall Street rallied and the S&P 500 closed at another record high.

In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 rose 0.77% to hit an intraday record high of 7,883.90 just moments after opening. The index was higher for a second straight day.

All eyes are now on Australia's retail sales data for the month of February, which a Reuters poll expects will rise 0.4%.

Investors will also be watching for moves in the Japanese yen after it fell to 151.97 — its weakest level in 34 years against the U.S. dollar on Wednesday.

Futures for Hong Kong's Hang Seng index stood at 16,330, pointing to a lower open compared to the HSI's close of 16,392.84.

Japan's Nikkei 225 is also set to open slightly lower, with the futures contract in Chicago at 40,530 and its counterpart in Osaka at 40,380 against the index's last close of 40,762.73.

The U.S. benchmark S&P 500 index closed at a record higher Wednesday and headed for its best first quarter since 2019. The index gained 0.86% to close at 5,248.49, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.22%.

Both the S&P 500 and the Dow ended three-day losing streaks. The Nasdaq Composite rose 0.51%.

— CNBC's Lisa Kailai Han and Alex Harring contributed to this report

Are markets rising too much, too fast?

After hitting a record high earlier this month, the S&P 500 again notched a new closing high — along with the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite.

Last week, Goldman Sachs told clients they should start hedging for a market decline.

Find out what other pros say, and what hedging strategies to use.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.