Dollar strengthening continues
US stock market record rally was intact on Thursday against the background of China’s pledge to cut in half tariffs on some $75 billion of U.S. imports beginning February 14. The S&P 500 gained 0.3% to 3345.78. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 0.3% to 29379.77. Nasdaq composite index rose 0.7% to 9572.15. The dollar strengthening slowed despite report the number of people applying for first time jobless benefits fell by 15,000 to 202,000 last week: live dollar index data show the ICE US Dollar index, a measure of the dollar’s strength against a basket of six rival currencies, rose 0.2% to 97.46 and is higher currently. Futures on stock indexes point to higher openings today.
CAC 40 led European indexes advance
European stocks extended gains on Thursday. Both the GBP/USD and EUR/USD continued their sliding yesterday with Pound reversing higher while euro lower currently still. The Stoxx Europe 600 index added 0.45% led by bank shares. Germany’s DAX 30 gained 0.7% to 13574.82. France’s CAC 40 rose 0.9% while UK’s FTSE 100 edged up 0.3% to 7504.79.
Hang Seng leads Asian indexes retreat
Asian stock indices are mostly lower today. Nikkei ended down 0.2% at 23827.98 with yen little changed against dollar. Markets in China are mixed ahead of January trade report: the Shanghai Composite Index is up 0.3% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index is 0.7% lower. Australia’s All Ordinaries Index pulled back 0.4% despite continued Australian dollar decline against the greenback.
Brent futures prices are extending losses today. Prices ended lower yesterday after reports Russia wasn’t willing to commit to crude oil output cut after the OPEC+ Joint Technical Committee recommended a cut to production of its members and other allies of 600,000 barrels a day: March Brent crude lost 0.6% to $54.93 a barrel on Thursday.
Gold slips as Dollar strengthens
Gold prices are retracing lower today. Prices rose yesterday: April gold added 0.5% to $1570 an ounce on Thursday.