India Morning Call-Global markets

Sun Jan 12, 2014 10:19pm EST

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EQUITIES
NEW YORK - The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq ended modestly higher on
Friday, led by gains in defensive names after a
weaker-than-expected payrolls report raised new questions about
both the strength of the economy and the aggressiveness of
Federal Reserve stimulus.
    For the week, the S&P 500 rose 0.6 percent, while the Nasdaq
climbed 1 percent. The Dow Jones industrial average finished the
week down 0.2 percent.
    Defensive stocks were the day's gainers, with utilities
 and telecoms among the few rising for the
day. Financial and energy shares were the
weakest for the day; both are closely tied to the pace of
economic growth.
    
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LONDON - Britain's top share index closed firmer on Friday,
though off the session's best, after disappointing U.S. jobs
data knocked the index back from its highest levels since early
November.
    The FTSE 100 touched a 2014 high at 6,769.94, just
before the report on nonfarm payrolls showed U.S. employers
hired the fewest workers in almost three years in December.
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TOKYO - Japan's Nikkei benchmark eked out a slight gain on
Friday, though it still suffered its worst weekly loss since
October, while Uniqlo clothing chain operator Fast Retailing Co
Ltd climbed after its quarterly earnings beat expectations.
    The Nikkei ended 0.2 percent higher at 15,912.06
ahead of the release of the U.S. jobs report later in the day.
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HONG KONG - Hong Kong's Hang Seng index to open up 0.9
percent. 
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FOREIGN EXCHANGE
SYDNEY - The U.S. dollar nursed broad losses early on Monday
after surprisingly soft employment data raised doubts about how
quickly the Federal Reserve can scale back stimulus.
Disappointing British and Canadian data on Friday also
undermined both sterling and the loonie, leaving the euro, yen
and Antipodean currencies among the best performers.
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TREASURIES
NEW YORK - U.S. Treasuries prices jumped on Friday, with
benchmark yields posting their biggest one-day drop since
October, as government data showed the weakest monthly job
growth in three years in December, undermining investors'
confidence in the economy. 
    The surprise setback in labor conditions did not alter
expectations that the Federal Reserve will wind down its third
round of bond-purchase stimulus by the end of the year but the
weak hiring figures raised bets the U.S. central bank would be
in no hurry to raise short-term interest rates, traders said.
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COMMODITIES
GOLD
SINGAPORE - Gold extended gains to a third session on Monday to
hit its highest in nearly a month after a surprisingly weak U.S.
jobs report stoked expectations that the Federal Reserve could
temper the pace of its stimulus tapering.
    Spot gold edged up 0.1 percent to $1,248.39 an ounce
by 0018 GMT, after hitting $1,250.06 earlier - its highest since
Dec. 16. The metal gained nearly 1 percent last week. 
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BASE METALS
SYDNEY - London nickel jumped more than 2 percent on Monday,
adding to strong gains last week as a ban on unprocessed nickel
laterite ore exports from top producer Indonesia came into
effect, fanning a technical rally across other metals.
London Metal Exchange nickel climbed 2.4 percent to
$14,190 a tonne, its highest since Dec. 30, bringing two-day
gains to more than 6 percent after prices rose nearly 4 percent
on Friday in the biggest one day move in three months.
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OIL
NEW YORK - Oil settled higher on Friday, reversing two days of
losses, as traders bought contracts to cover short positions
ahead of the weekend and reports of production problems at a
major U.K. oilfield stoked supply concerns. 
    U.S. oil settled more than $1 per barrel higher, recouping
$2 worth of losses from the previous two sessions, as
weaker-than-expected U.S. jobs data raised expectations that the
U.S. Federal Reserve may slow the winding down of its
commodity-friendly stimulus program.
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 (Compiled by Abhishek Vishnoi)
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