* US stock markets continued to rebound overnight, as the earnings season continues to be robust and “Bernanke Put” remains in play.
* ropean share markets ended mostly higher overnight, despite S&P downgrade of Spanish long-term credit rating.
* Asian stock markets finished mostly higher yesterday, on news that the Bernanke Put was still in play.
* Commodities prices were higher, with Gold prices traded around $US1,654, while crude-oil closed around $US104.
Australian shares are expected to be volatile this morning, after options yesterday’s expiry, and after stocks traded higher overseas. Markets jumped higher from the open again in the European markets and in the US as traders chose “risk-on” after the Bernanke Put was confirmed to still be in play.
The SPI Futures is trading above the key pivot level of 4250, ended up 0.4% (or 18 points) at 4,399. The key levels for our index this week are 4350 to 4430.
See below for ASX listed companies in the news today.
US stock markets continued to rebound overnight, as the earnings season continues to be robust and “Bernanke Put” remains in play.
The Dow Jones Industrials had its third straight increase, while in the broader market the S&P 500 finisehd on fractionally below 1400, for its highest close in 3-weeks, as the telecoms and consumer discretionary sectors led gains in eight of the S&P 500′s 10 sectors, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq closed at 3050.
Traders ignored disappointing reports on weekly job data where the new applications for unemployment benefits fell less than analysts expected last week, a sign the labour market recovery is slowing, and elsewhere the the Kansas City Fed manufacturing composite index fell to 3 in April, the lowest reading since December 2011. Trader sentiment was boosted by housing data where the National Association of Realtors found its seasonally adjusted index for pending sales of existing homes jumped 4% from a month earlier (far exceeding the expected 1.3% increase).
All ten company groups that make up the S&P index traded generally higher, with the Materials down -0.1% , Energy sector was up 1.1%, Financials sector up 0.9%, Industrials sector was up 0.6%, Technology was up 0.8%, while Consumer Staples were up 0.9%.
The Dow Jones closed up 0.9% (or 113 points) at 13,204, the S&P 500 index up 0.7% (or 9 points) at 1,400, the Nasdaq ended up 0.7% (or 21 points) at 3,050 and the smaller cap Russell 2000 was up 0.8%.
European share markets ended mostly higher overnight, despite S&P downgrade of Spanish long-term credit rating to ‘BBB+’ from ‘A’. The Stoxx Europe 600 index edged up 0.1%.
The three major markets rose around 0.5% in the session. Across the region gains were muted after news that the European Commission’s overall economic sentiment indicator fell sharply more than expected to 92.8 in April from 94.5 in March, the lowest level in over a year reflected a weaker outlook across all but one of the sub-sectors.
Corporate news was mixed with Volkswagen surging 8.7% after the auto maker beat analyst expectations for 1Q earnings and they confirmed their forecast for the year and Royal Dutch Shell rose 3.5% as its adjusted profit for the first quarter topped expectations. However banks were weaker, as Deutsche Bank shed 2.8% after reporting a 33% drop in 1Q profit and Banco Santander dropped 3.4% after reporting a 24% drop in 1Q profit as itsprovisions for bad loans jumped.
In London the FTSE 100 index last closed up 0.5% (or 29 points) at 5,749, the German DAX was last up 0.5% (or 35 points) at 6,740 while in France the CAC was last down -0.1% (or -4 points) at 3,229, Spain was down -1.3% and Italy ended down -0.7%.
Asian stock markets finished mostly higher yesterday, on news that the Bernanke Put was still in play. In Japan, investors were cautious ahead of the Bank of Japan’s policy meeting today. The market has already factored in an Y10 trillion expansion of the BoJ’s asset purchase program. Chinese shares ended flat as the market holds below the 2450 level, while in Hong Kong the market continues to hover around the 21,000 level.
In China the SSE Composite last closed down -0.1% (or -2 points) at at 2,404, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng Index last closed up 0.8% (or 163 points) at 20,809 and in Japan the Nikkei 225 Index was closed flat (or 1 points) at 9,562, South Korean KOSPI was down -0.1% for the session, while the Indian market closed down -0.1%.
The Dollar Index was lower at 79.18 on a higher Euro, while the Australian Dollar last traded lower at 1.0356. Commodities prices traded generally lower.
For the session the Benchmark crude NYMEX for April delivery was down -0.5% (or -$US0.51) settled at $US104.04. Copper prices are backing off key resistance level as Copper for April delivery was down -0.1% (or 0.3 cents) at $US3.7645. April gold was down -0.3% (or -$US5.10) at $US1,654.50.
ASX News Today
OSH – Oil Search says it is reviewing bids from potential joint venture partners in its Papua New Guinea gas projects.
LEI – Leighton Holdings’ says its Middle East operation is part of a joint venture awarded a $US169 million contract for work on a mine in Saudi Arabia.
LLC – Lend Lease Group property developer says fraudulent activities that prompted a legal investigation into an arm of Lend Lease in the United States no longer occur.
MTN – Marathon Resources the uranium explorer, will use a $5 million compensation payment from the South Australian government to investigate new projects.
NWS – Rupert Murdoch has declared he had “never asked a prime minster for anything” as the UK inquiry into media ethics claimed its first political scalp.
OZL – OZ Minerals lifted its production of gold and copper in the first three months of the year but costs rose due to heavy rains.
QRN – Rail operator QR National and Atlas Iron are looking at building a new railway linking mines in WA’s Pilbara region to Port Hedland.
SGT – SingTel says millions of dollars in sports broadcast rights will be at stake when a judgment is made in a legal battle between Optus and the nation’s two biggest football codes on today.
SWM – Seven West Media Australia’s largest diversified media business announced a surprise earnings downgrade.
Oceanagold (OGC) Q1 2012 Results
Market Summary ASX – to open higher
US & UK/Europe – higher
Commodities Stock Index up 0.3%
Gold Stocks Index up 0.5%
Oil Stocks Index up 1.7%
US ADRs – Broadly Higher!!…
BHP up 0.3%, RIO down -0.3; AWC down -2.1%
ANZ up 0.2% & NAB up 0.6%
NEM up 0.6%, JHX up , NWS up 1.4%
Head of Research
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