Market Update & Important Indicators:
Corporate earnings drove some of the day's biggest moves in stocks, though major U.S. indexes were little changed overall. American Express was the biggest gainer in the Dow industrials, rising 10% after the company beat forecasts for earnings and revenue Wednesday. The telecommunications sector was down the most in the S&P 500, falling 2%.
European stock markets erased losses and closed higher after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi hinted the December policy meeting will be key to deciding on further easing measures. The Stoxx Europe 600 index rose 0.2% to close at 344.29, after trading as low as 340.76 earlier in the session. The index was moving in tight ranges earlier in the day as investors cautiously waited for the ECB to announce its latest policy decision. As expected, the bank left interest rates unchanged and made no changes to its 80-billion-a-month ($87.8 billion) quantitative easing program. However, during ECB President Mario Draghi's news conference European stocks slumped and the euro rallied after the central bank boss said the Governing Council had not discussed an extension of its QE program beyond March 2017.
Asian markets were broadly higher Thursday after an overnight gain in oil prices, and a perceived victory by Hillary Clinton in the third and final U.S. presidential debate. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index closed up 0.3%. Brent prices fell 0.9% in Asia trade to $52.22 amid profit taking, after rising 1.9% overnight. The benchmark Nikkei closed at its highest level in six months, driven higher by a weaker yen and a view that Democratic nominee Clinton prevailed in her debate with Republican rival Donald Trump, which played out Thursday morning Tokyo time. The Nikkei ended up 1.4% at 17235.50, its highest level since April 27. The yen was down 0.2%, according to Thomson Reuters. Oil stocks were among the biggest gainers in the region. In China, the Shanghai Composite Index slipped 0.01%, following recent gains built on strong economic data from China this week.
Australian shares closed flat Thursday, underperforming broadly higher Asian equity markets. The S&P/ASX 200 gained 6.7 points, or 0.1%, to finish at 5442.1. U.S. oil prices shot up to a one-year high after another week of draining stockpiles further convinced traders that a longstanding glut may be waning. Mr. Spooner said a spike in the benchmark share index at market opening appears to have been driven by regular market dynamics, rather than anything extraordinary. The market shrugged off local employment data showing the unemployment rate fell to 5.6% in September from a revised 5.7% in August as fewer people were looking for work. The number of fulltime workers fell sharply, continuing a recent trend toward underemployment as a long mining boom ends.
On the London Metal Exchange, copper for delivery in three months was down 0.4% at $4,653/t. Other base metals were mainly lower on Thursday. Aluminium prices fell 1.0% to $1,606/t, zinc fell 1.0% to $2,271/t, tin fell 0.3% to $19,950/t and nickel fell 1.7% to $10,087/t. Lead bucked the trend rising 0.8% to 2,003/t.
Recent Contacts & Presentations:
Woods Properties Ltd (CWP), Sino Gas & Energy Holdings Ltd (SEH), Salt Lake Potash Ltd (SO4), Kalina Power Ltd (KPO), Austal Limited (ASB), Agrimin Ltd (AMN), Stavely Minerals Ltd (SVY), MGC Pharmaceuticals Ltd (MXC), Vital Metals Ltd (VML), Tox Free Solutions Ltd (TOX), Swick Mining Services Ltd (SWK), Davenport Resources Ltd (DAV), Orthocell Ltd (OCC), 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)