India Morning Call-Global markets

Sun Jan 5, 2014 10:02pm EST

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EQUITIES
    NEW YORK - U.S. stocks ended a volatile session mostly flat
on Friday as investors digested comments from Federal Reserve
officials that raised questions about how quickly the central
bank will end its stimulus program.
    Wall Street opened higher but subsequently pared gains after
Philadelphia Fed President Charles Plosser said the Fed faced
"immense" challenges now that it had reduced bond-buying, and
that it needed to be cognizant of a potential rapid rise in
future inflation. 
    - - - -
    LONDON - Strong gains by clothing retailer Next 
lifted Britain's top equity index on Friday, with many traders
expecting the market to push on to record highs this year.
    The blue-chip FTSE 100 index closed up 0.2 percent,
or 12.76 points, at 6,730.67 points.
    Next's shares hit record highs after the company raised its
annual profit outlook following strong Christmas sales. The
shares closed up 10 percent at 6,085 pence, having earlier risen
as much as 11 percent to a lifetime high of 6,130 pence, to add
the most points to the FTSE 100.
    For a full report, double click on 
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    TOKYO - Japan's Nikkei share average slid to a 1-1/2-week
low on its first trading day of 2014, snapping a nine-day
winning streak, as investors took profits on financials and
large market cap stocks such as Fast Retailing and SoftBank.
    The Nikkei dropped 2.6 percent to 15,872.86 in
mid-morning trade after falling to as low as 15,864.44, its
lowest level since Dec. 25.
    For a full report, double click on 
    - - - -
    HONG KONG - Hong Kong's Hang Seng index set to open
down 0.4 percent. 
    - - - -
    FOREIGN EXCHANGE
    TOKYO - The dollar held steady in early Asian trading on
Monday, supported by an upbeat outlook on the U.S. economy by
outgoing Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke that fanned
expectations of more stimulus reduction from the U.S. central
bank.
    Many market participants in Tokyo returned from the New Year
holiday on Monday, to find that the yen slumped to a fresh
five-year nadir of 105.45 yen against the dollar on Thursday,
before retracing slightly. On Monday, the dollar was buying
104.89 yen JPY=, up about 0.1 percent on the day.
    For a full report, double click on 
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    TREASURIES
    NEW YORK - U.S. Treasuries prices fell on Friday with
benchmark yields ending at 3 percent after Federal Reserve
Chairman Ben Bernanke gave an upbeat outlook on the U.S.
economy, supporting the view the Fed will continue to scale back
its bond purchases in 2014.
    Bernanke, who will leave as the head of the U.S. central
bank at month's end after seven years, also cautioned at an
event in Philadelphia the overall economic recovery since the
Great Recession "clearly remains incomplete." 
    For a full report, double click on 
    - - - -
    COMMODITIES
    GOLD
    SINGAPORE - Gold held near a 2-1/2 week high on Monday
supported by weaker equities, but a stronger dollar and bullish
comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke on the U.S.
economy kept gains in check.
    Spot gold had eased 0.1 percent to $1,234.90 an ounce
by 0021 GMT, not far from a 2-1/2 week peak of $1,240. It lost
nearly 30 percent of its value last year. 
    For a full report, double click on 
    - - - -
    BASE METALS
    SYDNEY - London copper inched up on Monday as bargain
hunting helped lift it from 10-day lows hit the session before,
but feeble economic momentum in the United States and China kept
a lid on prices.
    Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange 
edged up by 0.3 percent to $7,333.50 a tonne by 0120 GMT from
the previous session when it fell 1.1 percent. 
    For a full report, double click on 
    - - - - 
    OIL
    NEW YORK - U.S. crude lost over $1 on Friday as data showing
a larger-than-expected build in distillates dragged the oil
complex lower.
    Both U.S. and Brent crude fell for the fourth straight
session, with Brent dropping on traders' anticipation of the
return of Libyan oil supply.
    Distillate stocks in the U.S. rose 5 million barrels to
their highest level in just over two months as demand for the
fuel took a hit while production approached record highs, weekly
U.S. Energy Information Administration data showed on Friday.
   For a full report, double click on 

 (Compiled by Abhishek Vishnoi)
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