GLOBAL MARKETS-U.S. debt deal hopes steady global markets; dollar fades

Fri Oct 11, 2013 11:13am EDT

* All eyes on Washington amid signs of progress on deadlock
    * Wall Street stocks rise after equity gains in Europe, Asia
    * Dollar fades on view Fed tapering could be delayed


    By Herbert Lash
    NEW YORK, Oct 11 (Reuters) - Global equity markets rose for
a second consecutive day on Friday on hopes a deal was near to
avert a U.S. debt default and reopen shuttered government
offices, although caution among bond investors pushed Treasury
prices higher.
    President Barack Obama and Republican leaders appeared ready
late on Thursday to end a political crisis that has closed much
of the U.S. government and pushed the country close to default.
    Republicans, in a meeting at the White House, offered to
extend the government's borrowing authority for several weeks,
temporarily putting off a default that otherwise could come as
soon as next week. 
    Obama will press for a quick reopening of the entire federal
government, coupled with an emergency increase of U.S. borrowing
authority when he meets with Senate Republicans on Friday.
 
    U.S. stocks edged higher, following equity gains across the
world, after Thursday's biggest rally on Wall Street since the
first trading day of the year.
    "Once sanity returns, at least temporarily, to Washington
the market really should move higher," said Tim Ghriskey, chief
investment officer of Solaris Group in Bedford Hills, New York.
    MSCI's world equity index, which tracks
stocks in 45 countries, rose nearly 0.5 percent, while in Europe
the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top regional shares rose
0.4 percent to 1,250.25. Shares also rose in Asia.
    On Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average was
up 19.99 points, or 0.13 percent, at 15,146.06. The Standard &
Poor's 500 Index was up 1.45 points, or 0.09 percent, at
1,694.01. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 6.45 points,
or 0.17 percent, at 3,767.19. 
    A survey showed U.S. consumer sentiment deteriorated in
October to its weakest level in nine months as the shutdown
undermined Americans' outlook on the economy. 
    The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's preliminary
reading on the overall index on consumer sentiment fell to 75.2
in October, down from 77.5 in September. It was the lowest
reading since January and fell short of the 76.0 forecast by
economists recently polled by Reuters.
    Bond investors took a more sanguine view of the political
dealing in Washington.
    Short-dated Treasuries bill yields remained elevated, though
some were off their highest levels earlier in the week as banks
and investors shy away from holding debt that is at any risk of
delayed interest or principal payments.
    "We need the weekend with a minimum of drama before people
are comfortable that (a default) is off the table," said Jim
Vogel, interest rate strategist at FTN Financial in Memphis.
    The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note was up
10/32 in price to yield 2.6468 percent. The 2-year U.S. Treasury
note traded flat, yielding 0.35 percent, but the
30-year U.S. Treasury bond was up 19/32 in price to
yield 3.70 percent.
    The dollar edged lower against a basket of major currencies
but was headed for its first weekly gain in five, as optimism
grew that Washington may soon clinch a stop-gap budget deal.
    The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against
a basket of six major currencies, slipped 0.14 percent to
80.301.
    The euro rose 0.27 percent to $1.3556, while the
dollar rose 0.2 percent to 98.35 yen.
    Brent crude oil fell, at one point below $111 a barrel,
pressured by an improved supply picture, which offset optimism
for an end to the U.S. government shutdown.
    The supply outlook improved as the International Energy
Agency said non-OPEC supply would rise by an average of 1.7
million barrels per day in 2014, the highest annual growth since
the 1970s. 
    The IEA, the West's energy watchdog, said in its monthly
report that the United States would become the world's largest
oil producer next year, compensating for anticipated disruption
in OPEC production.
    "The IEA data is bearish for prices, since investors face
less risk from supply disruptions in North Africa and the Middle
East," said Simon Wardell, analyst at IHS Global Insight.
    Brent oil was $1.05 lower at $110.77 per barrel.
    U.S. crude was down $1.70 at $101.31 per barrel.