NEW YORK (Reuters) - The dollar surged to a seven-year high against the yen and global equity markets rallied on Wednesday after the Republican Party seized control of the U.S. Senate in midterm elections, auguring well for pro-energy and other business policies.
The Dow and S&P 500 finished at record closing highs on the sweeping Republican victory that dealt a punishing blow to President Barack Obama, who is expected to limit his legislative agenda in his last two years in office.
The beaten-down energy sector .SPNY was the second-biggest gainer of the S&P 500’s 10 sectors, rising 1.75 percent. The Republican majority in the Senate could lead to approval of oil and natural gas pipelines and reforms for crude and natural gas export laws. Utilities rose 2.31 percent.
“In the end, the results were pretty decisive,” said John Carey, a portfolio manager at Pioneer Investment Management in Boston. “That’s good news for the industries that had been subject to regulatory issues.”
MSCI’s all-country world stock index .MIWD00000PUS rose 0.31 percent. Stocks in Europe rose about 1.7 percent, helped by solid company results such as British retailer Marks & Spencer (MKS.L), whose shares surged 9.7 percent.
The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI closed up 100.69 points, or 0.58 percent, to 17,484.53. The S&P 500 .SPX gained 11.47 points, or 0.57 percent, to 2,023.57 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC lost 2.92 points, or 0.06 percent, to 4,620.72.
Some traders said the rally in Europe could be short-lived if European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi fails on Thursday to unveil new stimulus measures to spur growth in the struggling euro zone. Most euro zone bond yields edged up as investors questioned if the ECB can boost the region’s flagging economy.
Yields on 10-year German bunds rose to 0.826 percent.
The dollar rose to 114.84 yen, its highest level since November 2007, and last traded at 114.73, up 1.01 percent.
The dollar index soared to 87.606 .DXY, its highest reading in more than four years, before paring gains to trade up 0.51 percent at 87.424.
The euro fell 0.47 percent to $1.2485.
U.S. Treasury debt yields rose after payroll processor ADP reported solid U.S. private-sector job growth in October, but later pared losses to trade flat.
The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note see-sawed in choppy trade, trading at break-even to yield 2.3424 percent.
The private jobs data comes ahead of the U.S. government’s release on Friday of its much broader monthly labor market report.
Oil prices rose, with Brent rebounding from a four-year-low, as traders reacted to rumors of a pipeline blast in Saudi Arabia and bullish U.S. crude stocks data.
Data from the Energy Information Administration showed U.S. crude inventories rose 460,000 barrels last week, significantly less than the increase of 2.2 million barrels predicted by analysts in a Reuters poll.
Brent crude for December LCOc1 settled up 13 cents at $82.95 a barrel. U.S. crude futures CLc1 rose $1.49 to settle at $78.68 a barrel.
Reporting by Herbert Lash; Editing by Chris Reese, Leslie Adler and Dan Grebler