In Asian Equity Markets Japan’s Nikkei 225 jumped 2.82 percent on Monday morning session while the Topix jumped 2.84 percent. Shares of automaker Toyota gained around 3.28 percent. South Korea’s Kospi gained 1.37 percent as shares of steelmaker Posco jumped 2.51 percent. Samsung shares rose 2.8 percent. Australia’s benchmark ASX 200 was up 1.17 percent with most sectors seeing gains. The materials sub-index advanced 2.14 percent as shares of major miners traded up; Rio Tinto was up 2.54 percent, Fortescue Metals Group gained 3.02 percent and BHP Billiton jumped 3.06 percent.

 

In Currency Markets the US dollar weakened against its peers on Monday, as investors wagered that the Federal Reserve would put its policy tightening on pause in 2019, which eased market concerns about a slowing for U.S. growth. The yen relinquished initial gains while the euro advanced 0.14 percent versus the dollar in early Asian trade. The Australian dollar, often considered a barometer of global risk appetite, rose 0.1 pct. The Canadian dollar was marginally stronger versus the greenback at C$1.3375. The loonie has gained for three straight sessions due to a rebound in oil prices.

 

In Commodities Markets oil prices rose by more than 1 percent on Monday, lifted by optimism that talks could soon resolve the trade war between the United States and China, while supply cuts by major producers also supported the market. Brent crude futures were at $57.77 per barrel, up 71 cents, or 1.2 percent, from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil futures were at $48.65 per barrel, up 69 cents, or 1.4 percent. Crude oil inventories rose by 7,000 barrels in the week ending Dec. 28, to 441.42 million barrels

 

In US Equity Markets indices rebounded on Friday to close at its highest in two weeks after a strong jobs report and assurances from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell that the central bank would be patient and flexible in steering the course of interest rates. The S&P 500 gained 3.43 percent, to 2,531.94 and the Nasdaq Composite added 4.26 percent, to 6,738.86. Apple shares rose 4.3 percent and led the tech sector’s advance as the company began to recover ground lost after warning of a holiday quarter revenue shortfall on Wednesday.

 

In Bond Markets Treasury yields rose on Friday after the U.S. employment report for December came in more robust than expected, and on the back of U.S. equities, which hit session highs as Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell struck a dovish tone in a round table interview. The benchmark 10-year government yield ended at 2.65 percent, up 10 basis points from Thursday’s close. The five-year note yield was up 11 basis points at 2.48 percent, just below the two-year yield. The spread between two- and five-year notes first inverted on Dec. 3 and has been hovering around zero since then.

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