Economic recovery hopes take hold

European markets are expected to open higher Thursday morning as investor focus swings to the potential economic recovery and earnings season gets underway.

Britain’s FTSE 100 is set to climb around 28 points to 6,184, Germany’s DAX is seen around 140 points higher at 12,635 and France’s CAC 40 is expected to gain around 39 points to 5,020, according to IG data.

European stocks look set to follow overnight action in Asia Pacific, where markets advanced on the back of a continued rally in mainland China, bolstered by the release of Chinese inflation data.

Despite the persistently rapid spread of the coronavirus in the U.S., where the number of cases surpassed the 3 million mark on Wednesday, according to Johns Hopkins University, investor optimism has returned over the prospects of a recovery for the global economy as signs of progress emerge in data and scientific discovery. 

Gilead Sciences on Wednesday

Read More

Dollar, Chinese yuan in focus

U.S. dollar banknotes.

Liu Jie | Xinhua via Getty

The dollar nursed losses against most currencies on Thursday as a rally in riskier assets such as global equities and commodities put a dent in safe-haven demand for the U.S. currency.

China’s yuan rose to a four-month high against the greenback, extending recent gains as investors of all stripes increase positions in Chinese stocks due to growing optimism about the world’s second-largest economy.

Lingering worries about the spread of the coronavirus and a light calendar in Asia could keep some currency pairs in a tight range, but the dollar’s losses are gradually increasing as sentiment favours riskier bets on long-term economic growth.

“Rising stocks and a dip in Treasury yields are slight negatives for the dollar, but the market can’t move too far because we still have to worry about the virus,” said Minori Uchida, head of global market research at

Read More

Coronavirus cases temper recovery hopes

European markets are set to open lower Wednesday morning as surging coronavirus cases in parts of the world continue to cast doubt over the prospect of a global economic recovery.

Britain’s FTSE 100 is seen around 47 points lower at 6,143, Germany’s DAX is expected to fall by around 86 to 12,531 and France’s CAC is set to decline by around 40 to 5,004, according to IG data.

The U.S. is nearing 3 million cases and Florida faces an impending shortage of intensive care unit beds, as a majority of states continue to see spikes in new Covid-19 infections.

Meanwhile, the White House has begun the process of formally withdrawing from the World Health Organization as worldwide cases pass 11.8 million. A WHO official said Tuesday that it shouldn’t “be a surprise” if coronavirus deaths start to rise again.

The WHO on Tuesday also acknowledged that evidence was emerging of

Read More

U.S. crude stockpiles in focus

South Belridge Oil Field is the fourth-largest oil field in California and one of the most productive in the U.S.

David McNew | Getty Images

Oil prices eased in early trade on Wednesday as industry data showing a build in U.S. crude stockpiles and a forecast for U.S. crude output to fall less than anticipated in 2020 added to worries about oversupply.

Brent crude futures fell 13 cents, or 0.3%, to $42.95 a barrel by 0019 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures dropped 10 cents, or 0.3%, to $40.52 a barrel.

Prices were little changed in the previous session and have been held in a narrow band over the past two weeks as concerns about a spike in coronavirus cases globally tempers optimism about a recovery in fuel demand.

U.S. crude oil stockpiles rose last week, against expectations for a draw, although gasoline and distillate inventories fell more

Read More