In Asian Equity Markets recovered on Wednesday after falling a day before. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 0.44%. The city reported its second coronavirus death, marking the sixth fatality outside mainland China. The Shanghai composite rose 0.3%. Japan’s Nikkei 225 returned to positive territory, jumping 1.08% after slipping more than 1% the day before. Australia’s ASX 200 rose 0.29% by the end of the morning. Gold stocks rose as prices of the safe-haven asset jumped again. Evolution Mining jumped 4.90% and Newcrest bounced 3.43%.
In Currency Markets the U.S. dollar stood tall over the languishing euro and heavily sold exporter currencies on Wednesday, as investors reckoned with a deepening economic fallout from the coronavirus. Against a basket of currencies, the greenback is sitting by a four-month high at 99.452. It touched a one-week high against the Australian and New Zealand dollars overnight. Both Antipodean currencies are heavily exposed to China, and both have lost roughly 5% against the dollar this year.
In Commodities Markets oil prices were slightly higher on Wednesday with gains limited by the widening economic impact from the coronavirus epidemic that started in China, although new confirmed cases fell for a second day in the province at the center of the outbreak. Brent crude was up by 6 cents at $57.81 a barrel, while U.S. oil was up 7 cents at $51.97 a barrel. Both contracts started the Asian session trading lower. Oil prices have risen as much as around 8% since hitting lows for this year just over a week ago.
In US Equity Markets stocks fell on Tuesday after a surprise sales warning from technology bellwether Apple fanned worries about the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on global supply chains. The S&P 500 was down 0.60%, lower at 3,359.86. The Nasdaq Composite fell 0.35%, at 9,696.79. Among gainers, Kroger Co climbed 5.4% after Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc unveiled a $549.1 million stake in the supermarket chain. Tesla Inc jumped 5% as Bernstein and Morgan Stanley raised their prices targets for the electric carmaker’s shares.
In Bond Markets U.S. Treasury yields fell on Tuesday after Apple Inc’s warning it would miss its sales estimate due to manufacturing slowdowns caused by the coronavirus, denting risk appetite and increasing demand for safe-haven bonds. Benchmark 10-year note yields fell three basis points to 1.55%. Thirty-year bond yields dropped four basis points to 2.00%. They earlier fell to 1.98%, the lowest since Sept. 5, and are approaching a record low of 1.905% set on Aug. 28.