Thursday, September 21, 2017 1:14:27 AM - Markets closed
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Asian stocks climb, euro surrenders gains as French election jitters return
Source: Reuters - 4/21/2017 9:37:20 AM
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Asian stocks rose, lifted by bets on strong U.S. earnings and U.S. tax reform, while the euro retreated from a three-week high as jitters returned over the first round of French presidential elections on Sunday after a shooting in Paris.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS added 0.25 percent. It is set to end the week 0.6 percent lower.

Japan's Nikkei .N225 advanced 0.8 percent, on track for a weekly gain of 1.3 percent.

The euro EUR=EBS was marginally higher at $1.07185 early on Friday. On Thursday, it jumped to 1.0778, its highest level since March 29, and French stocks .FCHI jumped by 1.5 percent after polls showed French centrist Emmanuel Macron easily beating far-right, anti-European Union candidate Marine Le Pen in the second round on May 7.

But the euro fell back to close only slightly higher after a shooting on the Champs-Elysees shopping boulevard, in which one policeman was killed and two others were wounded. Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack, according to the group's Amaq news agency.

"Euro bulls will definitely respond to positive news around Macron, but that dissipates as the reality of low turnouts sets in," said Alfonso Esparza, senior currency analyst at OANDA in Toronto.

"Everybody remembers the Brexit polls and even the U.S. election polls. After those misses it is going to take a lot to make the markets trust them again."

French 10-year Treasury yields FR10YT=RR slumped to a three-month low of 0.856 percent on Thursday, while safe-haven German bund yields DE10YT=RR jumped to 0.244 percent, their highest close in two weeks.

Markets are awaiting several economic indicators from Europe later in the session, including Eurozone manufacturing and services figures for April and British retail sales for March, to be followed by U.S. manufacturing and services data for April and existing home sales for March.

Wall Street indexes closed between 0.75 percent and 0.9 percent higher on rising expectations for first-quarter corporate profits. S&P 500 stock index company earnings now are expected to have gained 11.1 percent in the first quarter.

The dollar retained Thursday's 0.4 percent gain, trading flat at 109.34 yen JPY=. It is up 0.7 percent for the week.

The dollar index .DXY, which tracks the greenback against a basket of trade-weighted peers, was also steady at 99.816, on track to lose 0.7 percent this week.

In commodities, oil was stronger on Friday following Thursday's choppy session as a tussle continued between worries over rising U.S. production and optimism over comments from leading Gulf oil producers that an extension to OPEC-led supply cuts was likely.

U.S. oil CLc1 jumped 1.1 percent to $50.83 a barrel early on Friday, its biggest one-day gain in almost two weeks, shrinking losses for the week to 4.4 percent.

Gold XAU= was also little changed on Friday at $1,280.61 an ounce, holding on to most of Thursday's 0.2 percent gain as investors remained hesitant ahead of the French election. It is poised for a weekly loss of 0.35 percent.


Newer News
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26/04 Oil falls on bulging U.S. crude inventories, record global supplies
26/04 Asian stocks hover near two-year highs on U.S. optimism, euro steady
25/04 Euro pauses after rally, Canadian dollar hit by U.S. duties on lumber
25/04 Asia stocks, euro steady as markets pause for breath after French election
21/04 Oil markets remain cautious on record supplies
Older News
20/04 Dollar edges away from recent lows with French vote in focus
20/04 Oil prices claw back ground after sharp drop, buoyed by U.S. crude stock dip
20/04 Asian stocks set for cautious start on weak U.S. cues
19/04 Dollar kicked by ascendant sterling after May calls UK vote
19/04 Sterling on a high; shares sidelined as caution rules
18/04 Dollar/yen off five-month low but U.S.-Japan trade issues limit rise
18/04 Oil prices mixed after U.S. production seen rising
18/04 Asia stocks slip amid North Korea concerns, dollar up on Mnuchin comments
14/04 Asian shares, Korean won head south on geopolitical worries
13/04 Dollar slumps broadly after Trump says currency 'getting too strong'
 
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