Dollar strengthening intact
US stock market rebounded on Wednesday as geopolitical tensions eased after President Trump’s measured statement downplaying the results of Iran’s missile attack of two US bases in Iraq. Trump said ‘minimal’ damage was done to US military facilities in Iraq and no US casualties were sustained. The S&P 500 added 0.5% to 3253.05. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 0.6% to 28745.09. Nasdaq rose 0.73% to fresh record 9129.24. The dollar strengthening continued as the Automatic Data Processing Inc. reported US private sector added above expected 202,000 new jobs in December. 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 97.29 and is higher currently.Futures in stock indexes point to higher openings today.
FTSE 100 led European indexes recovery
European stocks ended higher on Wednesday paring earlier losses. Both GBP/USD and EUR/USD continued sliding with both pairs lower currently. The Stoxx Europe 600 ended up 0.1% led by travel and leisure stocks, supported also by Ifo and KOF institutes reports the euro zone economy growth will be bigger in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to the previous quarter. Germany’s DAX 30 gained 0.7% to 13320.18 despite a report showing German factory orders fell unexpectedly in November. France’s CAC 40 added 0.3% and UK’s FTSE 100 rose 1.1% to 7574.93.
Nikkei led Asian Indexes gains
Asian stock indices are solidly higher today with easing of tensions around Middle East. Nikkei jumped 2.3% to 23739.87 as yen slide against the dollar continued. Chinese stocks are higher after reports vice premier Liu He will go to Washington to sign the phase one trade deal: the Shanghai Composite Index is up 0.9% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index is 1.7% higher. Australia’s All Ordinaries Index added 0.8% with Australian dollar slide against the greenback intact.
Saudi Aramco shares fell with Brent drop
Brent futures prices are extending losses today. Prices plunged on Wednesday as it became evident the Middle East tensions were winding down after President Trump’s speech: March Brent lost 4.2% to $65.44 on Wednesday. And Energy Information Administration reported US crude oil inventories rose by 1.2 million barrels last week. Shares of Saudi Aramco are still above the IPO price of 32 riyals that valued the company at $1.7 trillion. Shares opened at 34 riyals ($9.06) on Wednesday, the lowest since the company first traded publicly on December 11, following Iran’s missile attack on US targets in Iraq. At 34.15 riyals per share price on Wednesday the value of the company was at $1.82 trillion, down from a peak of $2.06 trillion on December 12.
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Gold weakening dynamic while Dollar strengthens holds
Gold prices are edging lower after Wednesday’s loss. The price of an ounce of gold for February delivery fell 0.9% to $1,560.20 Wednesday as the dollar strengthening continued.
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