Market Update & Important Indicators:
U.S. stocks rose as investors stepped up bets on a strengthening U.S. economy. Financial shares and Treasury yields climbed anew after data on housing, employment and inflation – as well as comments from Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen – bolstered expectations that the central bank will raise interest rates next month. Since last week, investors have been pouring money into bank shares and pulling money out of government bonds, with many expecting Donald Trump's election would mean a more expansive fiscal policy, higher inflation and ultimately higher U.S. interest rates. Those trades picked up again after stalling Wednesday, when financial shares in the S&P 500 and 10-year U.S. Treasury yields fell for the first time since Nov. 4. Expectations for an interest-rate increase in December have grown in recent sessions. Fed funds futures showed a roughly 91% chance of a rate rise at the Fed's meeting Dec. 13-14, according to CME Group.
European stocks finished at a nearly three-week high, with oil shares pulled up alongside a surge in oil prices, while the market found support on indications the European Central Bank still stands ready to inject further stimulus into the Eurozone economy. The Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.6% to close at 340.60, as all sectors finished with gains. The benchmark's close was the highest since Oct. 28, FactSet data showed, and Thursday's win was its third in four sessions. Energy shares were among the strongest performers, rising as West Texas Intermediate oil and Brent crude futures each leapt nearly 2%. Those moves came after Saudi Arabia's Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said he was optimistic the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries will reach a deal later this month to curb output for the oversupplied global oil market.
A drop in oil prices weighed on Asia stocks on Thursday, ahead of inflation, jobs and exports data expected from the U.S. and testimony from Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen on the economic outlook to Congress later in the day. In Japan, the Nikkei Stock Average closed flat even as the yen slipped 0.3% against the dollar. Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said on Thursday that he would hold down yields in Japan ahead of a likely rate-increase cycle in the U.S. The remark came within an hour of an announcement by the BOJ that it was prepared to buy an unlimited amount of certain government bonds at fixed rates, to bring down yields. Yields on two-year and five-year Japanese government bonds fell on Thursday after the BOJ's announcement. Korea's Kospi and the Shanghai Composite each gained 0.1% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index was down 0.4%.
Australia's equities market edged up Thursday, shrugging off broadly weaker global markets and falling oil prices. The S&P/ASX 200 closed up 10.8 points, or 0.2%, at 5338.5. A drop in oil prices weighed on Asia stocks on Thursday, ahead of inflation, jobs and exports data expected from the U.S. and testimony from Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen later in the day. U.S. stocks were mostly lower Wednesday as financial shares retreated.
The London Metal Exchange's three-month copper contract closed up 1.15% to $5,496/t. Meanwhile, aluminium prices fell 0.7% to $1,695/t and nickel fell 0.7% to $11,200/t. Zinc rose 0.4% to $2,517/t, tin rose 1.5% to $20,348/t and lead rose 0.4% to $2,155/t.
Recent Contacts & Presentations:
BC Iron Limited (BCI), ALT Resources Ltd (ARS), Gascoyne Resources Ltd (GCY), Dacian Gold (DCN), Orocobre Ltd (ORE), Alchemy Resources Ltd (ALY), Acacia Coal Ltd (AJC), Minotaur Exploration Ltd (MEP), Northern Minerals Ltd (NTU), Walkabout Resources Ltd (WKT), Antipa Minerals Ltd (AZY), Noxopharm Limited (NOX), Botanix Pharmaceuticals Ltd (BOT), Emerald Resources NL (EMR), Metals of Africa Ltd (MTA), Stavely Minerals Ltd (SVY), Australis Oil & Gas Ltd (ATS), Davenport Resources Ltd (DAV), TFS Corporation Limited (TFC), Emmerson Resources Ltd (ERM), Syntonic Ltd (SYT), MZI Resources Ltd (MZI), Resolute Mining Ltd (RSG), Orthocell Ltd (OCC)