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Chinese markets closed for Lunar New Year - 27.1.2017

27/1/2017

US stocks steady after two-day rally

US stocks closed little changed on Thursday after a two-day rally in which Dow Jones industrial average finally managed to surpass the level of 20’000 points. The index was buoyed by investors’ optimism over the Trump’s plans on public spending. Two other major US indices opened higher to approach record levels but finally closed little changed. The Q4 2016 earnings season started on good terms in US which was bullish for the markets. US dollar rebounded after its recent decline but its gains were limited on uncertainty with Trump’s protectionist trade policy. US dollar index, a measure of a greenback’s value against a basket of six major currencies, added 0.53% to 100.56. Dow Jones industrial average added 0.16% to 20,100.56. Nasdaq finished 0.02% lower at 5,655.18. S&P 500 index fell 0.07% to 2,296.67. Consumer discretionary stocks added 0.2% performing the best among S&P 500 major sectors. Comcast stocks advanced 2.8% as it released positive earnings report. Charter communications rallied 7.4% on merger speculation. Whirlpool, the world leader in home appliances production, slumped 8.5% to $173.94 as it missed earnings forecast. After the bell, Inter stocks rose about 1% while Microsoft and Alphabet slid after the release of their quarterly results.

UBS slumps 3.4% as it posted drop in 2016 profit

European stocks rose to the year-high on Thursday with FTSEurofirst index closing up 0.21% at 1,451.12 on optimism related to M&A deals. Johnson&Johnson cut a deal to buy Actelion for $30bn which lifted the shares of Swiss biotech company. Today on Friday, European stocks fell as UBS posted a drop in its full-year profit. The STOXX EUROPE 600 lost 0.5% while British FTSE 100 was flat as Tesco stocks surged 8.4% on an M&A deal. UBS stocks fell 3.4% as it posted a 47% decline in its 2016 net profit. In Italy, UniCredit stocks fell 4.4%. As a result, European banking sector lost 1.4%. Regardless of all this, EURO STOXX 600 holds near its highest in more than a year ending this week 1% higher.

Asian stocks steady ahead of holidays

Asian stocks steadied on Friday ahead of holidays the Lunar New Year in the region. Japanese Nikkei advanced on Friday as US dollar strengthened against the yen on optimism over US economic outlook and on positive inflation data. The December consumer core consumer prices showed a record low fall which means inflation shall pick up soon. Nikkei closed 0.3% higher at 19,467.40 on Friday having added 1.7% this week. USDJPY advanced 0.4% to 115.14 yen on Friday. Hong Kong stocks fell slightly on Friday snapping a four-day winning streak but remained near their three-month highs as investors booked profit ahead of holidays. Hang Seng index fell 0.06% to 23,360.78. The benchmark added 2.1% this week and 6.2% this month. Chinese markets are closed today for the Lunar New Year and will reopen on Friday, February 3. Hong Kong market will be closed on Monday and Tuesday, the trading will resume on Wednesday next week.

Oil retreats on Friday

Oil futures prices edged lower on Friday as rising crude output in US weighed on investors sentiment and offset previous gains in oil. Brent crude futures lost 0.5% to $55.98 a barrel while WTI futures fell 0.2% to $53.67 a barrel.

Gold end this week lower

Gold lost some ground on Friday on rising US dollar. Spot gold prices slipped 0.4% to $1,184.11 an ounce while US gold futures for February fell $6.40 an ounce to $1,183.40. Previously, gold hit its weekly high of $1,219.59 an ounce on Tuesday. Nevertheless, it closed this week with a 2% loss.


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