Market Update & Important Indicators:
Major U.S. stock indexes ended the week at fresh records buoyed by corporate earnings as well as the prospect of tax cuts and relaxed regulation. Stocks have been rising since Mr. Trump's election partly on expectations that his proposed tax cuts would energize the U.S. economy and lift corporate earnings. Gains accelerated Thursday after Mr. Trump said his goal of lowering taxes for businesses was moving "ahead of schedule." He plans to send Congress an outline for a tax-code overhaul for individuals and businesses by the end of the month. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose roughly 97 points, or 0.5%, to 20269. The S&P 500 climbed 0.4% and Nasdaq Composite added 0.3%. All three closed at records Friday and posted weekly gains. Bank stocks got a lift early Friday afternoon as the Federal Reserve announced that Daniel Tarullo, its regulatory point man who was appointed by President Barack Obama in 2009, will resign this spring.
European stocks advanced for a fourth straight day on Friday, boosted by optimism over strong export data from China and a round of upbeat corporate results. The Stoxx Europe 600 index added 0.2% to end at 367.39, marking its highest close since Jan. 26, according to FactSet data. For the week, the pan-European benchmark rose 0.9%. Mining companies helped propel the index higher, after China said its exports jumped 7.9% in January, up from a 6.1% drop in December.
The Nikkei Stock Average climbed 2.5% as a sharp drop in the yen and rising Treasury yields steered Japanese stocks higher. Financials and electronics stocks led gains in Japan, while energy stocks strengthened following a rise in oil prices earlier. The dollar was flat against the yen ahead of Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's meeting with Mr. Trump in Washington, D.C. Tensions between the U.S. and Japan have risen over currency and trade issues. Mr. Trump last week alleged the U.S. had sat back "like a bunch of dummies" as Japan and China devalued their currencies. Chinese blue-chip stocks gained 0.4% Friday, with the Shanghai Composite breaking 3200 for the first time in two months. In a phone call late Thursday in Washington with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Mr. Trump affirmed the "One China" policy that has long underpinned Sino-U.S. relations. Also aiding sentiment was China's stronger-than-expected imports and exports in January. Data around the Lunar New Year period are often volatile due to shifts in the holiday's timing. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index advanced 0.2%.
The prospect of growth-stimulating U.S. tax-reform measures being introduced soon by President Donald Trump helped drive broad gains by Australian stocks, lifting the equity market to end at its highest closing level since January 16. Tracking gains across the region, the local market rose for a fourth straight day Friday, rallying after Mr. Trump signalled he was near to pushing ahead with a campaign promise to lower taxes. Ending near its high of the session at 5720.6, the S&P/ASX 200 climbed 56 points, or 1%–the strongest one-day advance since the start of the year. The ASX 200 is now up 1% so far in 2017. For the week, the index was up 1.8%, rebounding from last week's drop.
On the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months was up 4.6% at $6,090/t. All other base metals were up on Friday. Aluminium prices rose 1.7% at 1,866/t, lead prices rose 3.5% at 2,419/t, nickel prices rose 3.7% at 10,615/t, tin prices rose 2.2% at 19,464/t and zinc prices rose 3.7% at 2,935/t.
Recent Contacts & Presentations:
St George Mining Ltd (SGQ), Threat Protect Australia Ltd (TPS), Paringa Resources Ltd (PNL), The Gruden Group Ltd (GGL), Primary Gold Ltd (PGO), Vault Intelligence Ltd (VLT), Botanix Pharmaceuticals Ltd (BOT) Orthocell Ltd (OCC), Strandline Resources Ltd (STA) Dragontail Systems Ltd (DTS), ABM Resources Ltd (ABU), Acacia Coal Ltd (AJC), Troy Resources Ltd (TRY), Hazer Group Ltd (HZR), Berkeley Energia Ltd (BKY), Sino Gas & Energy Holdings Ltd (SEH), Sovereign Metals Ltd (SVM), Kin Mining (KIN), Vital Metals Ltd (VML), Mincor Resources (MCR), Dacian Gold (DCN), Leaf Resources Ltd (LER), Alchemy Resources Ltd (ALY), OpenDNA Limited (OPN), MZI Resources Ltd (MZI)