* US stock markets’ positive momentum continued overnight, recording their best three day performance in two months, as a number of earnings reports beat estimates.
* European stock markets rebounded the most in over a month, thanks to better corporate earnings reports.
* Asian stock markets rose for the first time in four sessions, led by Japan, as data eased concerns of a hard landing in China.
* Commodities prices edged higher, Gold prices held at $US1,302, while crude-oil held above $US103. Copper slumped below the key crucial US3.0c level.
The Australian share market closed higher up 0.6% at 5420 yesterday, with a steady rise throughout the day, after Chinese first quarter GDP figures were up 7.4% beating expectations. All the Aussie sectors finished in the green. The Australian dollar rose and is trading around the US93.7c level. Remember it is index options expiry today, so expect volatility early.
The SPI 200 futures are up 0.3% at 5424, giving another positive lead for the ASX market today. The 5430 level key near-term for the ASX200, as markets traded higher across Europe and rose in the US.
US stock markets’ positive momentum continued overnight, recording their best three day performance in two months, as a number of earnings reports beat estimates.
The three benchmark indexes continued steadily higher throughout the session. The S&P500 is again trading in the green for the year. All ten S&P 500 sectors finished in the green, with gains again led by the Materials, Energy and Industrials sectors up 1.5%, closely followed by the Tech and Financials sectors up around 1%. The major indexes recovering off key levels with the S&P500, the DOW, the Nasdaq and the Russell 2000 indexes have all been exhibiting weakness with the 13 day moving averages crossing below the 100 day moving averages.
Seventeen S&P500 stocks reported today, with Yahoo beating estimates, but IBM and Bank of America missed estimates. There over 50 S&P500 stocks to report this week and analysts are predicting profits have fallen -0.9% in the first quarter (1Q), while sales are projected to have risen by 2.6%.
In economic news Fed Chair Janet Yellen reassured investors that the low interest rate environment will persist for the foreseeable future and that the US economic expansion continues in most regions. The Commerce Department reported industrial production rose more than forecast in March, while housing starts recovered to a 946,000 annualised pace in March, the first rise in four months.
For the session Dow Jones closed up 1.0% at 16,424, the S&P500 closed up 1.1% at 1,862 and the NASDAQ closed up 1.3% at 4,086, while on 10-year Treasury notes held at 2.63%.
European stock markets rebounded the most in over a month, thanks to better corporate earnings reports. The Europe Stoxx 600 recovered 1.3%, after having given back their gains for the year, due to the risk aversion, as military action escalates concerns over the Ukraine.
The German market regained nearly all the losses of the prior session, which were caused by a fall in investor confidence for a fourth straight month and risk aversion on concerns over the Ukraine. The London market recovered on the back of better figures from Tesco. The escalating geopolitical concerns has prompted the US and European leaders to consider further sanctions against Russia as armed separatists have occupied government buildings in the eastern part of the Ukraine.
For the session the German DAX 30 closed up 1.6% at 9,317, the UK the FTSE 100 closed up 0.7% at 6,584, the French CAC 40 closed up 1.4% at 4,405, while the Spanish market close up 1.6% at 10,267.
Asian stock markets rose for the first time in four sessions, led by Japan, as data eased concerns of a hard landing in China. The MSCI Pacific Index recovered 0.9% for the session, rebounding from two week lows, as all ten sectors finished in the green.
The Chinese and Hong Kong markets held after the Chinese economy grew by 7.4% in the first quarter, better than the 7.3% expected, but less than the 7.7% last quarter. Chinese industrial production also increased by 8.8% in March on year.
The Japanese market surged the most in two months, led by tech stocks after Yahoo and Softbank reported better than expected earnings, as bargain hunters stepped in, after last week the index recorded its worst weekly performance since June.
For the session the Shenzhen Composite closed up 0.1% at 2,232, the Hong Kong Hang Seng closed up 0.1% at 22,696, and the Japanese Nikkei surged up 3.0% at 14,417, while the South Korean KOSPI closed flat at 1,992.
The Dollar Index was higher at 79.82 on a lower Euro, and the Aussie Dollar recovered towards four month highs at US93.7c. Commodities prices rose.
Overnight the COMEX WTI Crude for APR13 delivery closed up 0.1% at $US103.80, the COMEX Copper for APR13 delivery closed up 0.2% at 3.02, the COMEX Gold for APR13 delivery closed down -0.1% at $US1,302.30.
ALZ – Australand says it has not received any proposal from major shareholder Stockland about a potential takeover.
API – Australian Pharmaceutical Industries is in suspension from trade while the drugs distributor and pharmacies operator assesses the carrying value of its assets.
BHP – BHP Billiton has raised its full year guidance for iron ore and metallurgical coal production after achieving record output so far this fiscal year.
BRL – Bathurst Resources has raised $A7.39 millionin a discounted placement to institutional investors to help fund development of its Escarpment open-cut coal mine on NZ’s Denniston Plateau near Westport.
BSL – Bluescope Australia’s largest steelmaker and owner of the NZ Steel mill, has been giver approval to acquire the assets of Fletcher Building’s Pacific Steel in a $A111.7 million deal.
CGF – Challenger says total group assets and funds under management at 31 March 2014 was $49.5 billion, an increase of 21% on year and 1% for the quarter, while Challenger Life annuity sales for the March 2014 quarter increased of 29% on pcp and Retail annuity sales were up 35% on pcp.
FMG – Fortescue Metals Group the Pilbara iron ore miner has boosted its iron ore shipments by 15% in the March quarter and plans to boost production by 35 per cent over the next three months.
ILU – Iluka Resources the mineral sands miner has recorded a -19% drop in production and Q1 revenue down -6.6%.
TPM – TPG has been fined $400,000 for failing to provide access to emergency numbers for customers who had not paid bills.
ASX –open higher
US & UK/Europe – higher
US ADRs – Broadly higher!…
ANZ +1.4%, NAB +0.7%, NWS +0.7%
AWC +1.2%, BHP +1.4%, RIO +0.1%, NEM -0.4%
By Michael Hevern D2MX Investment Advisor For trade ideas and recommendations on how to trade in this market, sign up for a free trial of the D2MX Daily Trading Report, call 1300 610 024 or email email@example.com.