In Asian Equity Markets Japanese stocks rose on Monday, as the dollar’s steady performance against the yen fuelled buying in stock futures, while Nomura Real Estate dived after saying a stake purchase in the company by Japan Post was no longer being considered. The Nikkei was up 0.6 percent at 20,063.42 in mid-morning trade. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside Japan rose 0.7 percent. Australian stocks added 0.3 percent and South Korea’s KOSPI rose 0.4 percent. Chinese blue-chip stocks advanced 0.8 percent on signs tight liquidity conditions were easing. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 0.9 percent.
In Currency Markets sterling held steady on Monday ahead of the start of Brexit negotiations, with investors also awaiting comments from a top Federal Reserve official to see whether the U.S. dollar’s recent rise can be sustained. The British pound was little changed at $1.2777. It hardly budged on news that a van ploughed into worshippers leaving a London mosque on Monday, killing at least one person and injuring several. The euro treaded water at $1.1194 after gaining about 0.5 percent on Friday. Against the yen, the dollar inched up 0.1 percent to 110.95 yen. The dollar index held steady at 97.172.
In Commodities Markets oil prices fell on Monday, weighed down by a continuing expansion in U.S. drilling that has helped to maintain high global supplies despite an OPEC-led initiative to cut production to tighten the market. Brent crude futures were down 0.3 percent, at $47.24 per barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were down 0.3 percent, at $44.59 per barrel. Spot gold fell 0.1 percent to $1,252.40 per ounce. Among other metals, spot palladium was up 1.3 percent to $872.83, and platinum rose 0.4 percent to $928 per ounce. Silver rose 0.6 percent to $16.68 per ounce. It hit a low of $16.575 during the session, its weakest since May 19.
In US Equity Markets major stock indexes ended little changed on Friday even as Amazon.com’s $13.7 billion deal to buy upscale grocer Whole Foods roiled the retail sector and rocked shares of an array of companies including Wal-Mart and Target. The Dow rose 0.11 percent, to end at 21,384.28, the S&P 500 gained 0.03 percent, to 2,433.15 and the Nasdaq Composite lost 0.22 percent, to 6,151.76. Wal-Mart shares lost 4.7 percent, weighing the most on the Dow. Shares of Target, Walgreen Boots and Costco fell between 5 percent and 7 percent. Amazon shares gained 2.4 percent, making the stock the biggest boost to the S&P 500. Whole Foods shares rose 29.1 percent.
In Bond Markets U.S. Treasury yields edged lower on Friday, with all maturities posting weekly declines, after weaker-than-expected U.S. housing data fueled doubts that the Federal Reserve will be able to raise interest rates again this year. Benchmark 10-year Treasuries were last up 2/32 in price to yield 2.155 percent, compared with 2.162 percent late Thursday. Two-year Treasuries were last up 2/32 in price to yield 1.319 percent, compared with 1.355 percent late Thursday.