Stocks

Oil jumps on OPEC hopes; dollar firms vs yen

Reuters New York | Updated on January 17, 2018 Published on August 09, 2016

opec

The US dollar rallied against the yen on Monday amid firming bets for a US interest rate hike late this year, while oil prices jumped about 3 per cent as speculation grew that OPEC would try to restrain output.

US equity indexes receded after the S&P 500 and Nasdaq closed at fresh record highs on Friday after a strong US jobs report. The MSCI All-Country World equity index rose 0.3 per cent, helped by stocks in Asia.

Friday’s employment report showed US non-farm payrolls rose 255,000 jobs in July, more than the Reuters forecast of 1,80,000.

Following that sign of strength in the US economy, traders are now basically split on whether the Federal Reserve will raise benchmark US rates at its December meeting, according to the CME Fedwatch tool.

“The market is still digesting a blockbuster payroll number and I think a lot of things are in motion right now to assess whether the Fed raises earlier than thought,” said Doug Cote, chief market strategist at Voya Investment Management in New York. “It certainly won't be September, but it could possibly be December.”

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 14.24 points, or 0.08 per cent, to 18,529.29, the S&P 500 lost 1.98 points, or 0.09 per cent, to 2,180.89 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 7.98 points, or 0.15 per cent, to 5,213.14.

Gains in energy shares were countered by sharp declines in the healthcare sector.

US equities have pushed higher amid a better-than-expected corporate earnings season, and will take their cues this week from the results of several consumer companies.

“This is a natural pause for reflection by the markets. Everyone is sitting there saying ‘Holy cow, what did we do?’,’’ said Brad McMillan, chief investment officer at Commonwealth Financial Network.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index edged up 0.04 per cent. European bank stocks gained, helped by an upgrade for shares of Barclays.

The dollar climbed 0.2 per cent against a basket of currencies, rising for a fourth straight session. Against the yen, the dollar gained 0.6 per cent.

“Friday's employment report was extremely strong and I think that’s hardened the conviction of investors who view the US economy as strongly outperforming other countries,” said Kathy Lien, managing director at BK Asset Management in New York.

Oil prices jumped amid renewed speculation that OPEC would try to restrain output, easing oversupply worries that had pressured the market to three-month lows last week.

US West Texas Intermediate crude settled up 2.9 per cent at $43.02 per barrel, while Brent crude settled up 2.5 per cent at $45.39.

US Treasuries debt yields were up slightly, with longer-dated maturities edging up to their highest level in more than two weeks.

Benchmark 10-year Treasury notes fell 2/32 in price to yield 1.586 per cent.

Spot gold edged up 0.04 per cent after falling sharply on Friday.

Published on August 09, 2016
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