European Open Market Briefing – 24/10/2017 – by Arjun Lakhanpal

October 24, 2017 by

In Asian Equity Markets Japan’s Nikkei index edged up in choppy trade on Tuesday morning, on track for a record 16-day winning streak, while Yaskawa Electric tumbled after disappointing investors with tepid profit forecasts. The Nikkei rose 0.2 percent to 21,737.30 in midmorning trade after opening lower. The broader Topix rose 0.4 percent to 1,752.13. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 0.1 percent firmer at 549.82 points, not far from a 10-year high of 554.63 set last week.

In Currency Markets the dollar edged down on Tuesday, stepping back from recent highs as market attention turns to who will be the next head of the U.S. central bank. The dollar inched 0.1 percent lower to 113.35 yen, pulling away from a three-month high of 114.10 yen hit in the wake of Sunday’s general election in Japan. The euro added 0.1 percent to $1.1762, though its gains were seen capped ahead of the ECB’s policy meeting on Thursday, where the authority is expected to signal it will take small steps away from its ultra-easy monetary policy. The New Zealand dollar had the rug pulled out from under it after the country’s incoming Labour government laid out its left-leaning policies. It was last down 0.2 percent at $0.6949.

In Commodities Markets  oil prices inched up on Tuesday, getting support from a decline in oil exports from OPEC’s second-biggest producer Iraq and a projected extended fall in U.S. commercial oil stocks.  London Brent crude for December delivery was up 5 cents at $57.42 a barrel after settling down 38 cents on Monday. U.S. crude for December delivery was up 5 cents at $51.95. Iraqi oil exports have fallen more than 200,000 barrels per day (bpd) so far this month, as shipments from both north and south of the country declined. Spot gold was up 0.1 percent at $1,282.80 an ounce. Silver was up 0.6 percent to $17.14 an ounce. Platinum was up 0.8 percent at $928.05 per ounce and palladium rose 0.6 percent at $964.25 an ounce.

In US Equity Markets  stocks declined on Monday as each of the major Wall Street indexes retreated from a record, weighed down by a decline in technology and industrial shares. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.23 percent, to 23,274.38, the S&P 500 lost 0.40 percent, to 2,565.02 and the Nasdaq Composite fell 0.64 percent, to 6,586.83. Hasbro fell 8.6 percent after the toymaker’s forecast for the holiday season fell below estimates as Toys’R’Us bankruptcy began to hurt its operations. Shares of peer Mattel fell 3.2 percent. General Electric lost 6.3 percent after a host of brokerages cut their price targets on the stock, citing higher chances of a dividend cut at the industrial conglomerate.

In Bond Markets longer-dated Japanese government bond prices edged up on Tuesday after a regularly held auction to enhance market liquidity attracted ample investor demand. The 30-year JGB yield and the 40-year yield each declined by half a basis point to 0.875 percent and 1.085 percent, respectively. The five-year yield stood unchanged at minus 0.085 percent while the 10-year yield edged up 0.5 basis point to 0.070 percent.