Market Update & Important Indicators
U.S. stocks rose for the second consecutive session, boosted by energy and financial shares. The Dow industrials and S&P 500 have risen more than 2% since last Thursday as oil prices approach $50 a barrel and investors appear more comfortable with the prospect of higher interest rates as early as this summer. The gains, which include the S&P 500's big-gest advance in more than two months on Tuesday, have pushed the index near its highest close for the year. Energy stocks notched some of the biggest gains in the S&P 500 as U.S. crude oil rose 1.9% to $49.56 a barrel. The S&P 500's financial sector rose 1.1% to reach its highest level this year, and the KBW Nasdaq Bank index of large U.S. commercial lenders rose 2%.
The Stoxx Europe 600 climbed 1.3% to its highest close since April 28. Eurozone finance ministers and the International Monetary Fund reached a deal early Wednesday that clears the way for fresh loans for Greece and prevents the country from defaulting on big debt redemptions in July. Analysts said the deal reduced the risk of a summer crisis, but fell short of a long-term solution for the country's debt problems.
Stock markets in Asia rallied sharply Wednesday, jolted from weeks of torpor as oil prices advanced to their highest levels in more than seven months and investors shook off worries about higher U.S. interest rates. The Hang Seng Index finished up 2.7%, its biggest gain in over a month, leading rallies in other major share markets. Japan's Nikkei Stock Average finished up 1.6%, and South Korea's Kospi gained 1.2%. The Shanghai Composite Index slipped 0.2%, as China's central bank guided the yuan to its weakest level against the U.S. dollar in more than five years. Broadly, crude-oil prices, which rose overnight and continued to tack on gains in the Asia trading day, drove up resources companies and fuelled strong gains in the sector across most of the region.
Australian shares settled sharply higher Wednesday, as investors interpreted bullish data on U.S. home sales as evidence that the economy is doing well rather than provide a rea-son to worry about the prospect of higher U.S. interest rates. The S&P/ASX 200 Index closed up 1.5%, or 76.9 points, at 5372.5 featuring broad-based gains across sectors as diverse as financials, energy, mining and real estate. Overnight, the U.S. reported that new-home sales rose at their fastest pace in eight years. That contributed to the S&P 500 logging its best day since March, and moving the index to within 2.6% of its all-time high reached in May 2015.
Copper prices closed higher in London, as housing data from the U.S. buoyed demand and raised expectations of a near-term increase in U.S. interest rates. The London Metal Exchange's three-month copper contract was up 1.1% at $4,654 a ton at the PM kerb close, having hit a six-day high earlier in the session of $4,677 a ton. Among the other base metals, aluminium closed down 0.8% at $1,544 a ton, zinc was up 0.4% at $1,836 a ton, nickel was down 0.7% at $8,355 a ton, lead was down 0.9% at $1,635 a ton.
Recent Contacts & Presentations
Salt Lake Potash (SO4), Dakota Minerals (DKO), Cradle Resources (CXX), Saracen (SAR), Gold Road Resources(GOR), Regis Resources (RRL), Gascoyne Resources (GCY), Botanix (BNE), Sino Gas & Energy (SEH), Altura Mining (AJM), Navitas (NVT), Gage Roads (GRB), Bionomics (BNO)