Asia futures mixed as gold prices hold near record peak By Reuters


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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Security guard wearing a face mask walks past the Bund Financial Bull statue on The Bund in Shanghai

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By Chris Prentice

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Asia futures were mixed on Wednesday and gold traded mixed, after U.S. and European equities gained overnight on strong earnings results.

Hong Kong futures were 0.01% lower, while Nikkei futures were trading slightly above the ‘s previous close and Australian shares were set to track Wall Street higher.

held near a fresh record set on Wednesday with a boost from a weaker U.S. dollar and stimulus expectations. Prices are up about 34% this year.

“Low rates of interest just increase the attractiveness of real assets,” David de Garis, director of economics at National Australia Bank (OTC:), said on the bank’s morning podcast.

On Wall Street, rose 1.4%, the S&P 500 gained 0.6% and the added 0.5%, posting a new record peak and closing high.

A surprise quarterly profit from Walt Disney (NYSE:) Co and a slate of upbeat results from healthcare companies lifted sentiment on Wall Street.

A group of Senate Republicans on Wednesday backed extending a $25 billion payroll assistance program for U.S. airlines, according to a letter seen by Reuters, lifting airline stocks.

In Europe, the broad index closed up 0.3% at 1,417.05, on support from gains across London-listed mining groups Rio Tinto (NYSE:), BHP Group (NYSE:) and Glencore (OTC:).

U.S. shares also saw support from expectations of more coronavirus spending, but later in the day Washington leaders appeared to harden their stances.

The House Speaker said Democrats were determined to reach an agreement on a legislative package but only if it met the needs of Americans. The White House chief of staff said he will meet with Democratic leaders on Thursday evening, although he cautioned the two sides are still trillions of dollars apart in talks.

The dollar extended losses after U.S. private payrolls growth slowed sharply in July, pointing to a loss of momentum in economic recovery as new COVID-19 infections spread across the United States.

Oil prices rose to March highs after inventories fell sharply and the dollar weakened.

Treasury yields steepened on the prospect of increased supply in longer-dated debt after the Treasury Department said it would borrow more in the third quarter than previously anticipated.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.





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Mexico eager to lure firms from Asia under new trade deal By Reuters


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© Reuters. Mexico’s Economy Minister Graciela Marquez attends Mexico’s President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador daily news conference at National Palace in Mexico City

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By Stefanie Eschenbacher and Anthony Esposito

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Mexico has spoken to a host of foreign companies, particularly steelmakers, in an effort to lure business from Asia to capitalize on a new North American trade deal, Economy Minister Graciela Marquez said on Monday.

The U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement (USMCA) took effect at the beginning of this month, replacing its quarter-century-old predecessor, as the coronavirus pandemic wallops the global economy and international trade.

The new deal includes tougher content rules both for autos and steel and aluminum than when the North American Free Trade Agreement was launched in 1994.

“In steel we see the biggest opportunity,” Marquez, a Harvard-trained economist, told Reuters in an interview. “We want to show these companies the opportunities that open up with this increase in regional content requirements.”

Marquez said the government of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has held talks with foreign steelmakers, including South Korea’s POSCO (KS:), Japan’s Nippon Steel Corp (T:) and Mitsubishi Corp (T:) and Ternium (N:), about investing in Mexico to produce steel for the auto sector.

She said there is a possibility foreign steelmakers could partner with or take a stake in Mexico’s Altos Hornos de Mexico . A spokesman said the Mexican company is not currently in talks.

None of the other steelmakers immediately responded to requests for comment.

Considering Mexico’s diverse manufacturing base, Marquez said the government was interested in attracting a range of companies from across the globe.

She said the government also would seek to speak with Apple (O:) and other U.S. firms about relocating their supply chain to Mexico.

Retelling a recent conversation with Lopez Obrador, Marquez said she pointed to the cellphone she was holding in her hand and said, “These phones don’t have to be produced in China, … there is an enormous opportunity to produce them” in Mexico.

The government is looking to attract North American and European firms producing in China, Singapore and Vietnam.

Marquez said the new trade deal came into force at a “critical” juncture for both the Mexican and the global economy and that it could help Latin America’s second-largest country recover from the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.





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Asia stocks rebound, hopes of more stimulus offset virus worries By Reuters


© Reuters. An SGX sign is pictured at Singapore Stock Exchange

By Hideyuki Sano

TOKYO (Reuters) – Asian shares eked out gains and U.S. stock futures bounced back on Friday as hopes of more government spending around the globe suppressed concerns about rising new coronavirus case numbers and worsening tensions between Washington and Beijing.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan advanced 0.5%, paring a quarter of its 2% losses the previous day, while was almost flat.

In China, the CSI300 index climbed 1.1%, clawing back some of Thursday’s 4.8% slide and shrugging off news that Washington is considering banning travel to the United States by all members of the Chinese Communist Party.

Market watchers said investors are counting on U.S. policymakers to adopt more stimulus measures as the world’s largest economy struggles to contain the epidemic, with some existing programmes to support businesses set to expire within weeks.

“The sustainability of this rebound will be determined to a large degree by whether another fiscal deal is reached,” said ANZ bank analysts in Sydney in a note.

U.S. Congress is set to begin debating such a package next week, as several states in the country’s south and west implement fresh lockdown measures to curb the virus.

“You would think such sharp rises in infections would normally lead to fall in stock prices but at the moment, that was being offset by strong hopes for vaccines,” said Tomo Kinoshita, global market strategist at Invesco in Tokyo.

“But we now see higher risk of a market correction, considering the improvement in hard economic data we have seen over the past couple of months is likely to halt,” he said.

While retail sales for June released on Thursday beat market expectations, real-time measures of retail foot traffic and employee working hours and shifts have flatlined after steady growth since April.

The U.S. labour market remained in dire condition. There were 32 million people receiving unemployment checks under all programmes in the last week of June, down from the prior week but still the second-highest on record.

GRAPHIC: U.S. job market https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/mkt/qzjpqerrjpx/20717D.png

Meanwhile U.S. stock futures rose 0.2% in Asia, recouping some Thursday’s losses when the S&P500 dropped 0.34% as investors locked in gains from rallies in high-flying tech shares ahead of earnings later this month.

Kicking off technology sector results, Netflix (NASDAQ:) skidded 9.0% after the bell as the company posted slower subscriber growth than Wall Street’s high expectations and forecast a further slowdown in the pace of expansion in the current quarter.

In currencies, the euro was off the four-week high it touched earlier this week, but stayed firm as European Union leaders meet on Friday to seek to overcome differences over a proposed stimulus package to kickstart economic growth stifled by the coronavirus.

On the table at a summit starting later in the day – their first in-person talks around a table since the pandemic – are the EU’s 2021-27 budget and a new recovery fund worth 750 billion euros ($854 billion), which would mark a major step towards fiscal integration in Europe.

While Dutch opposition and the threat of a Hungarian veto weigh on chances for a deal, investors are pinning hopes on it being a question of when, rather than if, a deal is struck.

“Whether they will come to an agreement today, or by the end of this month, or by later this year is anybody’s guess. But there is a swell of hopes that you have seen at the start of the euro trading,” said Masaru Ishibashi, joint general manager of trading at Sumitomo Mitsui (NYSE:) Bank.

The euro fetched $1.1386, unchanged on the day.

The yen was flat at 107.50 per dollar.

In commodities trading, oil prices were little changed with down 0.25% at $43.26 per barrel and down 0.22% at $40.84.

($1 = 0.8783 euros)

Graphic: Asian stock markets https://product.datastream.com/dscharting/gateway.aspx?guid=516bc8cb-b44e-4346-bce3-06590d8e396b&action=REFRESH





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Stocks in Asia follow their U.S. counterparts higher early Wednesday


Stocks in Asia were mostly higher early Wednesday, following a rally in U.S. markets driven by optimism over the gradual economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

Japan’s Nikkei
NIK,
+1.40%

was leading the way, up about 1.5%, as investors looked to the Bank of Japan’s policy decision later in the day for clues about the economic outlook. The U.S. dollar and Japanese yen were trading little changed.

Chinese stocks were mixed, with the Shanghai Composite
SHCOMP,
-0.44%

down about 0.5% but Hong Kong’s Hang Seng
HSI,
+0.57%

up 0.75%

Equities in Australia
XJO,
+1.39%

were advancing a little better than 1% despite discouraging economic news Wednesday. The latest weekly payrolls data unsettled High Frequency Economics. The data, for the week ended June 27, showed a 1% drop in payroll employment and marked the first week-to-week decline since April 25. Carl Weinberg, chief economist at High Frequency Economics, had been hoping for a better outcome. “Two weeks before the renewed lockdown in Victoria, employment was already falling,” he says. “This makes us nervous.”

A second indicator, the Westpac-Melbourne Institute Index of Australian consumer sentiment, fell 6.1% to 87.9 in July from 93.7 in June on a resurgence in Covid-19 cases. Westpac Chief Economist, Bill Evans says the drop in confidence reverses all of last month’s impressive gain, taking the index back to the weak levels seen in May but still leaving it 16% above April’s extreme low of 75.

New Zealand’s NZX-50
NZ50GR,
+0.68%

is gaining for a third day, adding 0.5% in early trade. Gains are across the board with Ryman Healthcare
RYM,
+1.80%

, a2 Milk
ATM,
+1.05%

and Contact Energy
CEN,

driving the index’s rise. Church software
PPH,
+0.94%

ushpay extended losses, dropping 1.9% after a 8.4% fall the day before when its major shareholder sold part of its stake. The stock remains the best performer in the index year to date with a 106% gain.

Malaysia posted positive data. May unemployment data reflects encouraging signs that labor-market pressures may be easing, UOB says. There were fewer additional unemployed persons in May, fewer new recipients under the employee wage retention and wage subsidy programs, and increased job vacancies, UOB notes. The bank says this is partly due to the country’s stimulus measures and more businesses being allowed to operate since early May. Malaysian stocks
FBMKLCI,
-0.16%

were trading slightly in the green early Wednesday.

The story was compiled from Dow Jones Newswires and Associated Press reports.



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Asia shares at four-month peak, stimulus trumps virus fears By Reuters


© Reuters. A man wearing protective face mask walks in front of a stock quotation board outside a brokerage in Tokyo

By Wayne Cole

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Asian shares held near four-month highs on Monday as investors counted on super-cheap liquidity and fiscal stimulus to sustain the global economic recovery even as surging coronavirus cases delayed reopenings across the United States.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan inched up 0.05%, having hit its highest since February.

Eyes were on Chinese blue chips, which surged almost 7% last week to their loftiest level in five years. , however, has lagged with its domestic economy and was last up 0.4%.

E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 firmed 0.3%.

Most markets had gained ground last week as a raft of economic data from June beat expectations, though the resurgence of coronavirus cases in the United States is clouding the future.

In the first four days of July alone, 15 states have reported record increases in new cases of COVID-19, which has infected nearly 3 million Americans and killed about 130,000, according to a Reuters tally. [nL1N2EC043]

“It is very clear that the U.S. never got the COVID outbreak under control the way that other countries did. By reopening the economy too soon, we have seen a frightening increase in the pace of new cases,” said Robert Rennie, head of financial market strategy at Westpac.

Analysts estimate that reopenings impacting 40% of the U.S. population have now been wound back.

“So markets will have to climb a wall of worry in July as economic activity likely softens from the V-shaped recovery seen over recent months,” warned Rennie. “We must remember too that U.S. and China relations are deteriorating noticeably.”

Two U.S. aircraft carriers conducted exercises in the disputed South China Sea on Saturday, the U.S. navy said, as China also carried out military drills that have been criticised by the Pentagon and neighbouring states.[nL3N2EB00E]

The risks, combined with unceasing stimulus from central banks, have kept sovereign bonds supported in the face of better economic data, with U.S. 10-year yields holding at 0.67% and well off the June top of 0.959%.

Analysts at Citi estimate global central banks are likely to buy $6 trillion of financial assets over the next 12 months, more than twice the previous peak.

Major currencies have been largely range bound with the at 97.189 having spent an entire month in a snug band of 95.714 to 97.808.

The dollar was hardly changed at 107.59 yen on Monday, while the euro idled at $1.1260.

In commodity markets, gold has been benefiting from super-low interest rates across the globe as negative real yields for many bonds make the non-interest paying metal more attractive.

traded at $1,776 per ounce just off last week’s peak of $1,788.96. [GOL/]

Oil prices were mixed in early trade with futures up 15 cents at $42.95 a barrel, while eased 25 cents to $40.40. [O/R]

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.





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