Open Jan 9
In Asian Equity Markets indices rebounded Thursday after U.S. President Donald Trump’s comments on the Iran conflict eased investor worries about further escalation of geopolitical risks in the Middle East. The Nikkei 225 in Japan gained 1.9%, erasing its losses from the previous session. In South Korea, the Kospi was up 1.17%, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 1.2%. Australia’s ASX 200 rose 0.9%, with the heavily weighted financials sub-index gaining 0.77%.
In Currency Markets the Japanese yen and Swiss franc retreated on Thursday as the United States and Iran backed away from further conflict, with markets flipping back to the old habit of more risk-taking on hope of a U.S.-China trade deal. The dollar traded at 109.19 yen JPY=, jumping back sharply from a three-month low of 107.65 yen touched on Wednesday. The dollar rose to 0.9740 franc from Wednesday’s low of 0.96655 while the euro firmed to 1.0828 franc from 21-month low of 1.07825 set on Wednesday.
In Commodities Markets oil prices climbed on Thursday after a rocket attack on Baghdad triggered fresh concern over the potential for conflict in the Middle East, a day after markets were roiled by an Iranian missile strike on Iraqi bases hosting U.S. forces. But gains were muted as Washington and Tehran looked to defuse a crisis in the crude-producing region. Brent crude futures rose 43 cents, or 0.7%, to $65.87 a barrel, after seesawing through Wednesday to end with a 4.1% decline.
In US Equity Markets stocks climbed on Wednesday, with the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq hitting record highs, after President Donald Trump’s comments eased fears of an all-out conflict in the Middle East. The S&P 500 energy index was trading more than 1% lower, while the rest of the S&P sectors were trading higher. The S&P 500 gained 0.86%, to 3,264.99 and the Nasdaq Composite added 1.03%, to 9,162.23. Lennar Corp gained 1.8% after the No. 2 U.S. homebuilder beat quarterly profit estimates on lower home prices and mortgage rates.
In Bond Markets Treasury yields rose on Wednesday after tensions between the United States and Iran eased and investors moved out of safe-haven assets as risk appetite returned. The 10-year yield was last up 5 basis points to 1.876%, nearly 20 basis points above the low it hit overnight following the Iranian strike. Yields across maturities have moved roughly in step with the 10-year since late Tuesday. The two-year was last up 3.9 basis points to 1.585% having hit a three-month low in overnight trade of 1.452%.
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