Dollar strengthening continues
US stock market is poised to reopen sharply lower today after a day-off on Wednesday for the funeral of the former President George H.W. Bush. Futures on US stock indexes plunged after news Canada arrested a top executive of Chinese telecom giant Huawei Technologies at the request of the US. The S&P 500 dropped 3.2% to 2700.06 on Tuesday led by finance and industrial shares. The Dow Jones industrial average tumbled 3.1% to 25027.07. Nasdaq composite index sank 3.8% to 7158.43. The dollar strengthening continued: 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, inched up 0.03% to 96.99 and is higher currently.
European indices retreat accelerates
European stocks extended losses on Wednesday in thin trading with US markets closed for George H.W. Bush’s funeral. Both the EUR/USD and GBP/USD resumed climbing but are lower currently. The Stoxx Europe 600 lost 1.2%. Germany’s DAX 30 fell 1.2% to 11200.24. France’s CAC 40 closed 1.4% lower and UK’s FTSE 100 dropped 1.4% to 6921.84.
Hang Sang still loss leader among Asian indices
Asian stock indices are sharply lower today after news Canada arrested Huawei CFO at US request for violating US sanctions on Iran trade. Nikkei fell 1.9% to 21501.62 as yen edged higher against the dollar. China’s stocks are lower led by technology sector: the Shanghai Composite Index is down 1.7% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index is 2.6 % lower. Australia’s All Ordinaries Index extended losses 0.2% despite the Australian dollar continued retreat against the greenback.
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Brent down ahead OPEC meeting
Brent futures prices are edging lower ahead of OPEC official meeting today in Vienna. Prices ended lower yesterday as the Joint OPEC-Non-OPEC Ministerial Monitoring Committee, recommended a production cut from the September-October output levels. The February Brent crude lost 0.8% to $61.56 a barrel on Wednesday. Today at 16:30 CET the Energy Information Administration will release US Crude Oil Inventories.
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