European Open Market Briefing – 30/10/2017 – by Arjun Lakhanpal

October 30, 2017 by

In Asian Equity Markets Japan’s Nikkei index edged down in choppy trade on Monday morning as falls in financials countered gains in Apple suppliers after shares in the iPhone maker rose on Friday. In mid-morning trade, the Nikkei fell 0.1 percent to 21,979.66, after hitting a fresh 21-year high of 22,086.88 earlier. The broader Topix fell 0.2 percent to 1,767.18. Technology stocks were the top gainers in MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside Japan, which was up 0.5 percent. Samsung Electronics led the charts. Seoul stocks edged up 0.2 percent while Australia’s benchmark index climbed 0.3 percent.

In Currency Markets the dollar edged away from last week’s three-month highs on Monday, while the euro nursed losses after the European Central Bank and unrest in Spain’s Catalonia led it to post its worst week this year. The euro inched 0.1 percent higher to $1.1614, after plumbing a three-month low of $1.1574 on Friday, and losing 1.6 percent for the week, its worst performance in 11 months. The dollar edged down 0.1 percent against the yen to 113.58, after notching a three-month high of 114.45 yen on Friday. The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, fell 0.2 percent to 94.775 but remained not far from Friday’s three-month high of 95.150.

In Commodities Markets oil  was stable on Monday, with Brent remaining above $60 per barrel supported by expectations that an OPEC-led production cut due to expire next March would be extended.  Brent crude oil futures were at $60.40 per barrel, 4 cents above their last settlement but still close to their highest level since July 2015 and up more than 36 percent since their 2017 lows last June. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures were up by 0.1 percent, at $53.95 a barrel. Spot gold fell 0.1 percent, to $1,271.50 per ounce. Among other precious metals, silver lost 0.2 percent to $16.78 an ounce. Platinum was nearly unchanged at $914.10 an ounce, while palladium rose 0.4 percent to $969.20 an ounce.

In US Equity Markets stocks  climbed on Friday as a rise in the tech sector and a rally in Amazon shares helped push the Nasdaq to its best day in nearly a year. The Dow rose 0.14 percent, to 23,434.19, the S&P 500 gained 0.81 percent, to 2,581.07 and the Nasdaq Composite added 2.2 percent, to 6,701.26. Google-parent Alphabet  gained 4.26 percent as its revenue got a boost from advertising sales. Microsoft jumped 6.41 percent after the world’s largest software company reported further gains from its cloud computing services. Also lifting the sector were shares of Apple, which rose 3.58 percent after the company allayed concerns of muted demand for its 10th anniversary phone. Amazon was up 13.22 percent after reporting a quarterly sales rise.

In Bond Markets U.S. Treasury yields turned lower on Friday after Catalonia’s parliament declared independence from Spain, and amid reports President Donald Trump was said to be favoring Federal Reserve Governor Jay Powell to lead the U.S. central bank. In late morning trading, U.S. two-year note yields fell to 1.595 percent, from Thursday’s 1.619 percent. Earlier, two-year yields rose to a nine-year peak of 1.639 percent after the GDP data. U.S. 30-year bond yields were also down at 2.936 percent, from 2.961 percent on Thursday.