OPENING CALL: The Australian share market is to open higher.
The S&P 500 climbed to a record close while the Dow industrials were lower. The yield on the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury ticked down to 0.662%, according to Tradeweb, from 0.683% Monday. The WSJ Dollar Index was recently down 0.49% to 87.88. Crude-oil prices settled largely unchanged as traders await supply data and OPEC+ meeting. Gold futures ended higher for a second session and closed atop $2,000.
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.8% to 6123.4, supported by investor reaction to earnings. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 index opened higher following a positive lead from overseas and continued to gain through the session, led by the health, tech and consumer-discretionary sectors.
The broad stock-market index finished up 0.2% at 3389.78. The index has risen for three consecutive weeks, but its momentum has slowed in recent sessions, as it struggled to finish above its record closing high of 3386.15 from February. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.2%, while the Nasdaq Composite was up 0.7%.
Gold futures finished higher to extend a rally, with the precious metal regaining traction above the psychologically significant level at $2,000 amid persistent weakness in the U.S. dollar and slack in government bond yields.
December gold rose $14.40, or 0.7%, to settle at $2,012.10 an ounce, after the metal climbed 2.5% on Monday to mark its best daily point and percentage gain since April 22.
Oil futures remained in a holding pattern as traders looked ahead to data on U.S. crude supplies and a meeting by an OPEC+ panel charged with monitoring the effect of production cuts by major producers.
West Texas Intermediate crude for September delivery closed unchanged at $42.89 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The global benchmark, October Brent crude, gained 9 cents, or 0.2%, to finish at $45.56 a barrel on ICE Futures Europe.
Major currencies were firmer against the US dollar – which hit 27-month lows-in European and US trade. The Euro rose from lows near US$1.1883 to highs near US$1.1964 and was near US$1.1930 at the US close. The Aussie dollar fell from highs near US72.64 cents to lows near US72.14 cents and was near US72.40 cents at the US close. And the Japanese yen lifted from near 105.64 yen per US dollar to JPY105.28 and was near JPY105.40 at the US close.
European share-markets finished lower on Tuesday. The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell by 0.6%. Shares of Danish jewelry maker Pandora dropped 7.5% as it expected sales to decline this year by up to one-fifth. The German Dax index fell by 0.3%. And the UK FTSE index lost 0.8%. Marks & Spencer shares were down 4.9% after it revealed plans to cut a further 7,000 jobs. In London trade, shares in Rio Tinto rose by 0.3%, but shares in BHP fell by 2.6% as its annual profit missed analysts’ expectations.
Earlier in the day in Asia, the Nikkei Stock Average ended 0.2% lower at 23051.08, weighed by steel-related and aviation stocks amid a stronger yen.
China’s major stock benchmarks eked out small gains after briefly slipping into negative territory. The Shanghai Composite Index inched up 0.4% to 3451.09, the Shenzhen Composite Index added 0.5%, and the ChiNext Price Index settled 0.2% higher.