OPENING CALL: The Australian share market is expected to open lower. The SPI200 futures contract expected to open 63 points down.
The French government is taking steps to prop up France’s auto industry amid a collapse in car purchases caused by the coronavirus crisis.
Hertz Paid Out $16 Million in Bonuses Days Before Bankruptcy – The car-rental company paid more than $16 million in retention bonuses to senior
managers, including its new chief executive, just days before it filed for bankruptcy Friday night.
Local shares are trading mostly flat at lunch with the ASX 200 nudging four points higher to 5,784 after the first few hours of trade. The market opened with losses of just over 1% but is rebounding as the session progresses. This follows what were strong gains over the first two days of the week, where the benchmark index rose ~5%
Stocks surged on optimism about economies reopening and the potential development of a coronavirus vaccine, extending a rally that has pushed major U.S. indexes up more than 30% since late March. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed more than 500 points after the three-day holiday weekend and flirted with the 25000 mark for the first time since early March. The rally was driven by economically sensitive shares in the financials and industrials sectors. Goldman Sachs rose 9%, Raytheon Technologies gained 7.5% and Dow rose 7.4%.
Investors cheered signs of economic activity resuming faster than expected across parts of the U.S. and elsewhere in the world. Restaurant bookings and spending on hotels and airlines appears to be picking up in the U.S., coinciding with a decline in the daily number of new infections.
Gold futures ended lower as global equities rallied, in response to the lifting of business lockdowns as the coronavirus pandemic recedes, along with encouraging
reports of progress toward a COVID-19 vaccine, dulling the yellow metal’s haven appeal. Gold for June delivery on Comex fell $29.90, or 1.7%, to settle at $1,705.60 an ounce, while July silver lost 9.8 cents, or 0.6%, at $17.595 an ounce.
Oil futures finished higher with continued cuts in crude production and a pickup in demand, as pandemic-related lockdowns ease around the world, boosting U.S. prices by more than 3%.
West Texas Intermediate crude for July delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange rose $1.10, or 3.3%, from Friday to settle at $34.35 a barrel. Monday was a holiday for regular trading on Nymex.
The WSJ Dollar index, which tracks the U.S. dollar against 16 foreign currencies, is up 0.01% during intraday trading, to 92.91, according to Dow Jones Market Data.
Earlier in the day, most major Asia-Pacific equity benchmarks ended the day higher. In Japan, where the government lifted its state of emergency Monday, the Nikkei 225
rose 2.6%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index advanced 1.9% and the Shanghai Composite gained 1%.
Japanese stocks were driven by gains in railway and airline stocks, after the government fully lifted a state of emergency that was aimed at containing the spread of
the coronavirus. The Nikkei Stock Average rises 2.6% to 21271.17. Hong Kong shares ended higher, extending their recovery from last week’s steep losses due to concerns over heightened tensions with mainland China. The benchmark Hang Seng
Index rose 1.9% to settle at 23384.66.