Asian Stock Markets Mixed As Dollar Extends Gains, Futures Fluctuate

23/09/2020 The Dollar Spot Index has broken out of its steep March downtrend and now testing the closely-watched resistance at its 50-day moving average as investors seek haven from the recent volatility in markets. Wall Street reversed earlier losses Tuesday to close the day firmer after the US Fed. Chair pointed to a slow economic recovery and that it will need further support. Shares fell in Japan as traders returned from a holiday, while markets in Hong Kong remained flat. Nasdaq futures dipped after disappointment from Tesla Inc., while S&P 500 contracts were little changed. Australian stocks advanced after a prominent economist projected the central bank will reduce interest rates next month. The JSE fell 0.10% to 53,265.33 points while the blue-chip Top 40 was little changed 0.05% on Tuesday as worries on renewed lockdown restrictions in Europe spark concern about the global economic recovery. At 6pm local time, the rand had firmed 0.16% to R16.7590/$, the euro had weakened almost 0.60% to $1.1700. The local currency has lost 16.84% against the greenback year-to-date, while the British pound is down 4.05% against the dollar.

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EU/UK
European markets closed on a mixed tone o Tuesday despite the sell-off endured over the previous three sessions with French and Spanish shares weaker due to concerns around the still quickly rising number of Covid-19 infections in both. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index closed up 0.2% in London, with energy shares the best performers. Insurers and travel & leisure stocks were the biggest laggards, both extending their decline this week to 6.2%. London’s FTSE100 firmed up 0.43% by the end of trading, alongside the Dax gaining 0.41%, while the CAC-40 retreated 0.40%. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced new restrictions including a 10 p.m. curfew for pubs, bars, restaurants and other hospitality venues across England as the number of novel coronavirus cases increases.

U.S.
The Dow closed 140.48 points higher on Tuesday, putting an end to four-day losing streak as Chinese trade relations, a potential second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic and stimulus negotiations were all in focus. Powell told the House, of Representatives Financial Services Committee, that the Fed stands ready to use all of the tools at its disposal to assist the recovery of the economy and limit the lasting damage from the Covid-19 pandemic’s effect on the nation. By the end of trading: the S&P 500 was 1.05% firmer and the Nasdaq saw out the session 1.71% stronger at 10,963.64. Better-than-expected earnings from Nike and KB Home lifted sentiment on Wall Street after the bell on Tuesday. Nike saw digital sales rise 82%, driving the stock up 6% after hours. US stock futures in better territory this on Wednesday morning, with: the Dow futures up 148 points, or 0.55%, the S&P500 futures gaining 0.20%, while the Nasdaq futures are flat 0.09%. Tesla’s stock skids 7% as promised ‘Battery Day’ innovations remain off in the future.

ASIA
Asian markets mixed on Wednesday as investors kept a wary eye on how the coronavirus pandemic will affect the economic outlook. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific ex Japan was steady. Japan’s Nikkei returned from a two-day holiday to drop 0.3%. Markets in Shanghai and Hong Kong were up 0.33%t, while the ASX 200, in Australia, rose 2.30%.

COMMODITIES
Oil prices fell on Wednesday after an industry group reported a surprise rise in U.S. crude, adding to worries about demand that led to a steep selloff earlier in the week. Brent crude 0.54% at $41.50 a barrel, while U.S. crude dropped 0.63% to $39.54. Gold Down on Stronger Dollar.

Tomorrow is Heritage Day, Holiday. Wishing You All a Good Day Ahead, and to those going away for the long weekend ….safe travels 😉