Opening Call: The Australian share market is to open higher.
Stocks closed higher, with tech shares pushing the S&P 500 to a record. The 10-year Treasury note yield rose slightly to 1.53%, after falling as low as 1.475% on the day.
The WSJ Dollar Index was down 0.44% to 86.17. Oil ended sharply higher as gasoline futures hit a 2 1/2-year high. Gold prices logged their third straight rise as bond yields and the dollar slipped.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index rallied at the end of a volatile session to finish flat. The benchmark index had been 0.6% higher after a positive lead from the U.S. but failed to sustain the early momentum and was almost 1.0% lower before recovering. The tech sector was the worst performer, resuming its recent declines with a 1.6% drop.
U.S. stocks climbed, led by shares of technology companies that have lagged behind in recent weeks as bond yields soared. Both the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the session at an all-time-highs.
The Nasdaq Composite gained 2.5%, propelled by a jump in mega-cap technology stocks including Apple, Netflix and Facebook. The S&P 500 climbed 1%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose about 0.6%, a day after the blue-chip index closed above 32000 for the first time.
Investors’ demand for stocks – and particularly growth companies – has revived this week as bond markets have stabilized, with the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note falling from an intraday high of 1.607% on Monday. On Thursday, the yield ticked up slightly to 1.525% from 1.520% Wednesday. “Some calm has come back into the bond market,” said Ryan Detrick, chief market strategist at LPL Financial. “And that’s brought some calmer and confidence from equity investors.”
Gold futures gained for a third session, aided by a weaker U.S. dollar and slightly lower bond yields.
April gold on Comex picked up 80 cents, or less than 0.1%, to settle at $1,722.60 an ounce, well off its intraday high at $1,738. The trade for bullion follows a 0.3% gain in the previous session.
Brent crude, the global benchmark, notched its highest close since May 2019, finishing just shy of the $70-a-barrel level. Analysts attributed the move to follow-through buying for both commodities after U.S. government data on Wednesday showed gasoline inventories fell 11.9 million barrels last week, even as crude supplies rose by more than 21 million barrels.
West Texas Intermediate crude for April delivery rose $1.58, or 2.5%, to finish at $66.02 a barrel on Nymex. May Brent crude jumped $1.73, or 2.6%, to settle at $69.63 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe, the highest close since May 28, 2019.
China’s major stock benchmarks ended the session higher, continuing a recovery trend from steep losses earlier this week as high-valuation stocks withdrew from their recent peaks. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index closed 2.4% higher, its highest one-day percentage gain since October.
The Shenzhen Composite Index rose 2.4%, while the ChiNext Price Index, a measure for emerging industries and startups, gained 2.6%. The food and beverage sector remained one of the top winners, continuing its strength since Wednesday.