The Australian share market is expected to open higher after the release of tepid US inflation figures eased expectations that US interest rates will rise faster this year .
At 0700 AEST on Friday, the Australian share price futures index was up 13 points, or 0.21 per cent, at 6,110 points.
The Australian share market on Thursday hit a three month high as surging oil prices fuelled a second straight day of big gains for the energy sector.
The benchmark S&P/ASX200 was up 10.7 points, or 0.18 per cent, at 6,118.7 points, while the broader All Ordinaries index was up 11.5 points, or 0.19 per cent, at 6,215.6 points.
In economics news on Friday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics releases housing finance figures for March.
In equities news, Papua New Guinea focused Oil Search hold its annual general meeting on Friday, and Graincorp releases its half year earnings results.
Wall Street have jumped higher, and Apple shares inched closer to a $US1 trillion stock market value, as tepid inflation data eased worries of faster US interest rate hikes this year.
Fuelled by a $US100 billion buyback plan unveiled last week, Apple rose 1.43 per cent to a record high close of $US190.04, lifting the S&P 500 more than any other stock.
The iPhone maker is about seven per cent away from becoming the first company ever to have a market capitalisation of $US1 trillion.
The US Labor Department’s consumer price index increased 0.2 per cent in April, less than economists’ expectations, as rising costs for gasoline and rental accommodation were tempered by a moderation in healthcare prices.
A higher inflation number could have increased fears of more aggressive interest rate hikes by the US Federal Reserve.
The spot price of gold in Sydney at 0700 AEST was $US1,321.30 per fine ounce, from $US1,312.21 per fine ounce on Thursday.
IRON ORE: $66.24 +0.19 (June contract)
Oil futures gave up earlier weakness to finish with a modest gain, notching another three-and-and-a-half-year settlement high.
The U.S. dollar edged lower, with a key gauge of the currency’s performance versus major rivals braced for a second straight loss, after April consumer-price inflation data came in weaker-than-expected.
The ICE U.S. Dollar Index, which measures the buck against a half-dozen counterparts, was down 0.4% at 92.668, and pulling further pulling away from a four-month high reached on Tuesday.
The broader WSJ Dollar Index, which tracks the U.S. unit’s strength against 16 currencies, shed 0.5% to 86.22.
The UK’s top share index hit a fresh three-and-a-half month high on Thursday after a decision by the Bank of England to keep rates on hold pushed sterling lower, while shares in Royal Bank of Scotland surged after it settled a probe in the United States.
The FTSE index closed 0.5 per cent higher at 7,700.97 points, outperforming a slightly negative European market.
Sterling dropped after the Bank of England held interest rates steady as expected, but trimmed some losses after Governor Mark Carney told the BBC that he expected a rate rise over the course of the next year if there are no shocks to the economy.
Asian stocks rose on Thursday, with energy shares leading the way as crude oil prices bolted higher after US President Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of a nuclear deal with Iran.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan advanced 0.6 per cent, while Japan’s Nikkei climbed 0.39 per cent. South Korea’s KOSPI rose 0.83 per cent and Shanghai was 0.48 per cent higher.
Energy shares soared as crude oil prices reached three-and-a-half-year highs, with investors betting the US withdrawal from a nuclear agreement with Iran would increase tensions in the Middle East and curtail oil supply.
On Thursday, New Zealand’s S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.21 per cent, to 8,637.72.