Asia follows Wall St higher as optimism returns after oil shock

GMT 09:18 2016 Tuesday ,19 April

Arab Today, arab today Asia follows Wall St higher as optimism returns after oil shock

Tokyo led a recovery in Asian stock markets on April 19, 2016
Hong Kong - AFP

Tokyo led a recovery in Asian stock markets Tuesday, soaring more than three percent as dealers built on a strong lead from Wall Street and disappointment over failed oil talks gave way to hope for the global economy.

While Asia ended lower Monday following the collapse of the weekend meeting to cap crude production, initial sharp losses in Europe and New York turned to gains as dealers were lifted by positive comments on the US outlook and recent upbeat data out of China.

News of a huge strike in key producer Kuwait also provided support to the black gold, which rallied in Asian afternoon trade and a risk-on mood lifted higher-yielding currencies.

Federal Reserve Bank of Boston president Eric Rosengren said Monday the world's number one economy was much healthier than financial markets thought and saw growth picking up through this year.

"While there have been significant headwinds from abroad, and market turbulence related to those headwinds, I view the US economy as fundamentally sound and likely to perform better than the domestic economies of most trading partners," he said.
Also, New York Fed president William Dudley said he foresaw inflation picking up as the economy improved.

The comments soothed concerns and helped fuel buying after early shocks caused by the Doha oil talks failure.

"Markets reversed much of the post Doha price action in energy and currencies," analysts at Australia & New Zealand Banking Group, including Sydney-based Jo Masters, wrote in a report.

"Sentiment was also supported by positive comments on the US and European outlook by the Fed’s Dudley and improved US corporate earnings," they said, according to Bloomberg News.

Gains in New York and Europe were followed by similar gains in Asia. Tokyo ended 3.7 percent higher.

- Crude rallies  -
The Nikkei had lost more than three percent Monday as a dive in oil prices compounded the impact of two earthquakes last week that has led to some of the country's biggest firms including Toyota shutting down factories.

Hong Kong ended 1.3 percent up, Shanghai closed up 0.3 percent, Sydney one percent and Seoul finished 0.1 percent up.

In early European trade Tuesday London and Paris each added 0.3 percent and Frankfurt put on 0.5 percent.

World markets were already enjoying buying last week following a series of upbeat readings from China -- including on trade, investment and factory activity -- suggested a long-running growth slowdown in the country may be bottoming out.

A more confident mood provided support to higher-yielding, or riskier, currencies, pushing the Australian dollar 1.1 percent higher against its US counterpart and the South Korean won 1.3 percent up. The Indonesian rupiah added 0.3 percent and Canadian dollar 1.1 percent. The oil-linked Malaysian ringgit jumped 1.2 percent.

The greenback also edged up against the yen -- which is the go-to unit in times of trouble. It bought 109.13 yen in Tokyo Tuesday, well up from the levels below 108 yen seen early Monday.

On oil markets Brent added 1.8 percent and West Texas Intermediate 1.6 percent as thousands of workers in Kuwait extended industrial action over planned wage cuts to a third day.

Prices had plunged early Monday soon after news that the long-awaited meeting of major producers in Doha had collapsed, fanning worries about a persistent global oversupply.

However, the losses were pared through the day on the strike, which has caused output to dive more than 60 percent in Kuwait, the fourth largest producer in the OPEC exporter group.

- Key figures around 0800 GMT -

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 3.7 percent at 16,874.44 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: UP 0.3 percent at 3,042.82 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng: UP 1.3 percent at 21,436.21 (close)

London - FTSE 100: UP 0.3 percent at 6,370.75

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.1326 from $1.1315 on Monday

Dollar/yen: UP at 109.13 yen from 108.83 yen

New York - Dow: UP 0.6 percent at 18,004.16 (close)


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