Microsoft and Apple rally leads US stocks higher
Dollar strengthens despite falling factory orders
US stock market started the week on stronger note led by Microsoft and Apple rally. The S&P 500 gained 0.7% to 2724.87. Dow Jones industrial added 0.7% to 25239.37. The Nasdaq composite index rose 1.2% to 7347.54. The dollar strengthening accelerated despite data showing above expected drop in factory orders in November: the live dollar index data show the ICE US Dollar index, a measure of the dollar’s strength against a basket of six rival currencies, rose 0.3% to 95.80 and is higher currently. Futures on US stock indexes point to mixed openings today.
FTSE 100 rises while other European indices slip
European stocks ended marginally higher on Monday. EUR/USD joined GBP/USD’s decline with both pairs retreating currently. The Stoxx Europe 600 index inched up 0.1%. The DAX 30 however slid 0.6% to 11176.58. France’s CAC 40 lost 0.4% while UK’s FTSE 100 bucked the trend gaining 0.2% to 7034.13.
Bank shares rally leads Australian market up
Asian stock indices are mixed today in thinner trading as many markets are closed for Lunar New Year holidays. Nikkei slid 0.2% to 20844.45 with yen little changed against the dollar. Markets in China and Hong Kong are closed for Lunar New Year festivities. Australia’s All Ordinaries Index erased all of previous session losses rallying 2.0% as the Reserve Bank of Australia kept its rate steady at 1.5%. The Australian dollar resumed climbing against the greenback and bank stocks rallied after a closely watched regulator’s report didn’t recommend breaking banks up following a yearlong investigation into widespread misconduct.
Brent futures prices are lower today still supported by supply concerns after US sanctioned Venezuela’s state-owned oil firm last Monday. Prices fell yesterday: April Brent crude slid 0.4% to $62.51 a barrel on Monday.
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