In Asian Equity Markets stocks held their gains on Friday while the dollar was at a month low against major peers as traders awaited U.S. employment data with global shares at record highs. Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.38 percent, and MSCI’s all-country world index edged higher having ended the previous session at its fifth consecutive closing high. Australia was up 0.3 percent and Korea rose 0.61 percent while Chinese blue chips fell 0.27 percent and Hong Kong lost 0.6 percent right after the bell, as traders try to balance weaker economic data out of China against the potential for future stimulus.
In Currency Markets the dollar sank to its lowest in almost a month against major rivals on Friday, ahead of a crucial U.S. jobs report that could spur the Federal Reserve to an earlier tapering of stimulus. The dollar index lost 0.04 percent to 92.193 after earlier touching 92.189 for the first time since Aug. 5. The euro edged up 0.02 percent to $1.1878. The Australian dollar was little changed at $0.74005 from Thursday, while the kiwi was about flat at $0.71145 after rising to the highest since June 16 at $0.7120 in the previous session. The greenback was little changed at 109.915 yen.
In US Equity Markets the stocks rose on Thursday, as higher commodity prices helped energy names recover ground and the latest jobs data left investors unfazed about existing positions. The Dow rose 0.37 percent, to 35,443.82, the S&P 500 gained 0.28 percent, to 4,536.95 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.14 percent, to 15,331.18. The energy sector rose 2.5 percent, reversing much of the loss suffered during the first three days of the week. The technology index lost into negative territory, as some of the industry’s largest companies saw their recent upward momentum stall.
In Commodities Markets oil rose more than $1 on Thursday, supported by optimism about the pace of the economic recovery from the pandemic, a sharp decline in U.S. crude stocks and a weaker dollar. Brent crude settled up $1.44 at $73.03 a barrel. U.S. crude rose $1.40 to settle at $69.99 a barrel. Spot gold eased 0.2 percent to $1,809.60 per ounce. Silver fell 1.2 percent to $23.88 per ounce, palladium eased 1.8 percent to $2,398.58, and platinum lost 0.5 percent to $996.23. Aluminium prices rose to a 10-year high on growing concerns that restrictions on Chinese production of the metal are causing supply shortages.
In European Equity Markets stocks closed higher on Thursday as expectations of improving economic growth supported oil stocks, while drugmaker Swedish Orphan Biovitrum was the top performer on the STOXX 600 after accepting an $8 billion takeover offer. The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.3 percent. SOBI rose 25.8 percent after it agreed to a takeover by U.S. private equity firm Advent International and Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC. Travel and leisure stocks rose 0.8 percent as they recovered from a recent sell-off on concerns over the Delta variant of the coronavirus.
In Bond Markets U.S. Treasury yields drifted lower on Thursday as the market remained on hold ahead of the government’s closely watched employment report, which potentially could break yields out of their tight range. The benchmark 10-year yield was last down 1 basis point at 1.2919 percent. The five-year note yield, which is more sensitive to intermediate interest rate hikes, was last down less than a basis point at 0.774 percent. The yield curve that measures the gap between yields on two- and 10-year Treasury notes was last less than a basis point flatter at 107.84 basis points.