*¬† European stock markets jumped higher again in “Risk-On” trading in reaction to ECB comments about commitments to easing.
*¬† Asian stock markets finished week on positive note, as investors preempted further easing from the eurozone and the US.
*¬† Commodities prices generally higher, Gold prices are trading around $US1,618 while crude-oil closed up around $US90.
The SPI Futures is trading above the key support level of 4180, ended up 1.1% (or 47 points) at 422. The key levels for our index this week are 4180 to 4280.¬† Trading will be driven by overseas sentiment in a busy week for economic data.
See below for ASX listed companies in the news today.
US stock markets surged to end the week at 2-month highs.¬†Stocks rose for the week, giving the Standard & Poor‚Äôs 500 Index the longest rally since March and all 30 Dow Jones component stocks finished in the green as that index is up 3-weeks for its best winning streak since January.
For the week the Dow Jones closed up 1.9%, the S&P 500 index up 1.7% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq ended up 1.1% at 2,893 and the smaller cap Russell 2000 was up 0.6%.
Traders pushed stocks higher after commitments from European policy makers that they will act to ease the eurozone‚Äôs debt crisis and better-than-expected corporate earnings from Caterpillar (up 6.4%) to Moody‚Äôs Corp (jumping 13%).
The financials and industrial sectors in the S&P 500 climbed over 2.5%.¬† Tech stocks tempered the gains with Apple and United Parcel Service falling over -3% due to disappointing earnings reports, but Facebook shares were smashed losing -18% after reporting its first results since its initial public offering.
Recent economic reports have showed the US economy expanded at a slower pace in the second quarter as a softening job market prompted Americans to curb spending. Consumer confidence in July dropped to the lowest this year, new home sales unexpectedly fell from a two-year high while orders for equipment slumped.
It is a busy week for economic data this week, including the FOMC Fed meeting and culminating with the Non-Farms Payrolls report on Friday.
All ten company groups that make up the S&P index traded higher, with Materials up 1.8%, Energy sector up 1.8%, Financials sector up 1.9%,¬† Industrials sector was up¬† 2.2%, Health Care up 0.%, Technology was up 2.2%,¬† while Consumer Staples were up 2.0%.
The Dow Jones closed up 1.5% (or 188 points) at 13,075, the S&P 500 index up 1.9% (or 26 points) at 1,386, the Nasdaq ended up 1.4% (or 39 points) at 2,893 and the smaller cap Russell 2000 was up 1.5%.
European stock markets jumped higher again in “Risk-On” trading in reaction to ECB comments about easing.
Share prices had slumped in the first three days of last week, due to concerns over more of Spanish¬† regions seeking aid and as the Moody‚Äôs Investors Service lowered outlooks for Germany, the Netherlands and Luxembourg. However investor sentiment turned around after comments from the ECB as they reaffirmed their commitment to do “whatever it takes” in supporting the eurozone financial system. German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and Draghi pledged to do everything to protect the euro.
European markets have finished higher for an eighth straight week, and for the week in London the FTSE 100 index closed down -0.4%, the German DAX was closed up 0.9% , while in France the CAC closed up 2.7%.
The is a plethora or economic news due to this week, including the ECB meeting.
On Friday in London the FTSE 100 index closed up 1.0% (or 54 points)¬† at¬† 5,627, the German DAX was closed up 1.6% (or 106 points) at 6,689, while in France the CAC closed up 2.3% (or 73 points) at 3,280.
Asian stocks fell for a second week, despite sparking up late in the week.
Traders had sold stocks early in the week on concerns that Greece may not meet bailout targets and after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said the Chinese economy faces significant downside risks.
Stocks across the region pared the losses late in the week on anticipation of coordinated easing efforts by central banks globally, but the MSCI Asia Pacific Index dropped -0.6 for the week. Stocks advanced after European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi said policy makers will do whatever is needed to preserve the euro and were prepared to intervene in bond markets as yields surged in Spain and Italy.
For the week in China the SSE Composite closed down -1.8%, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng Index closed¬† down -1.9%,¬† and in Japan the Nikkei 225 Index¬† was down – 1.2%.¬† Europe will be the focus again this week.¬† Europe will be the focus again this week.
In China the SSE Composite closed down -0.5% (or -10 points) at 2,126, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng Index closed¬† up 2.0% (or 382 points) at 19,274,¬† and in Japan the Nikkei 225 Index¬† was up 1.5% (or 123 points) at 8,566.
The Dollar Index was higher at 83.59 on a lower Euro, while the Australian Dollar last traded lower at 1.037. Commodities prices traded higher.
For the session the Benchmark crude NYMEX for August delivery was up 1.8% settled at $US90.13.¬† Copper prices are looking for key support level as Copper for August delivery was up 0.9% at $US3.426, while August Gold was up 0.2% (or $US2.90) at $US1,618.00.
ASX News Today
ALZ – Australand is confident of delivering earnings growth in 2012 after reversing its profit slide amid tough times in the property development market.
APN – APN News & Media says it does not know of any unannounced information that would explain its recent share price fall.
BTA – Biota Holdings the drug maker has posted a 17 percent rise in global sales of its key flu drug Relenza in the fourth quarter.
CTX – Caltex Australia says it will close its Kurnell refinery in Sydney in the second half of 2014 as part of a supply chain restructure.
DLS – Drillsearch Energy has announced a $40 million capital raising to drive development of its oil and gas projects.
ERA – Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) says the uranium market remains challenging after it recorded a net first half loss of $59.86 million.
HDF – Independent directors of Hastings Diversified Utilities Fund’s (HDF) responsible entity are to hold talks with APA Group about its sweetened $1.34 billion takeover offer.
MST – Metal Storm the defence technology company has been placed in voluntary administration.
NCM – Newcrest Mining has exceeded its copper production targets for its 2012 financial year, while gold production is in line with forecasts.
NUF – Nufarm the Agribusiness, expects to generate a higher underlying profit in the current financial year as its businesses in Australia and Brazil perform solidly.
OSH – Oil Search the Australian company, has suspended loading operations
in Papua New Guinea after an oil spill that the company described as minor.
QAN – Qantas Airways the national carrier has confirmed it is in talks with a number of airlines about potential alliances, including Dubai-based Emirates.
ROC – Roc Oil remains on track to achieve its forecast of between 6,000 and 7,000 barrels of oil equivalent a day by the end of the year, despite a 14 percent drop in the June quarter.
WES – Wesfarmers says its Coles supermarket full year sales had leapt 6.1 percent to $33.698 billion.
ASX ‚Äď to open higher
US & UK/Europe – sharply¬† higher
Commodities Stock Index¬†¬† up 1.8%
Gold Stocks Index¬†¬† up¬† 1.3%
Oil Stocks Index¬† up 1.8%
US ADRs ‚Äď Broadly higher!!‚Ä¶
BHP up 3.3%, RIO up 4.5%; AWC up 4.3%
ANZ up 3.0% & NAB up 2.7%
NEM down -3.3%, JHX up 2.4%, NWS¬† up 3.2%
By Michael Hevern
Head of Research¬†
For Buy and Sell recommendations on ASX listed companies register for a FREE trial of¬†¬†FREE trial of D2MX Financial Research.