(Bloomberg) — European stocks ticked higher with U.S. equity-index futures on Thursday after a mostly positive session in Asia as investors weighed the prospects of America removing a scheduled tariff hike on Chinese imports in 10 days. The dollar edged lower.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index opened in the green, with health-care and household goods among the leading sectors, but went on to give up a chunk of its early gains. German shares were among the laggards; data earlier had showed factory orders in the nation unexpectedly fell. Contracts on the three main American equity gauges also ticked higher. All the major Asian stock benchmarks increased except for South Korea’s Kospi. An index of emerging-market shares climbed.
Treasuries mostly held their losses from Wednesday, when a report indicated the U.S. and China were closer to a deal that would avoid the next round of tariffs. India’s government bonds tumbled after its central bank unexpectedly left interest rates unchanged. The pound rose for a fifth day against the greenback as expectations grow for a Conservative victory in next week’s election.
Investors are focused on whether a phase-one trade deal can come together in time to avert another scheduled hike in American duties on Chinese goods, a result that many says is priced into various asset classes. With fears of a global economic slowdown subsiding as the year draws to a close, concern has shifted to the prospect that political tension will infect progress on trade — particularly U.S. support for Hong Kong protesters and Chinese Muslims.
“If we do just muddle along and there aren’t the tariff increases on Dec. 15, we’ll probably see something of a stable stock-market environment,” Kristina Hooper, chief global market strategist at Invesco Ltd., told Bloomberg TV. Any negative trade news “could be the spoiler for what otherwise would be a fairly solid month for stocks,” she said.
Elsewhere, iron and steel stocks led gains in Japan after a government stimulus package was announced at 26 trillion yen ($239 billion), slightly larger than expected, to support growth. Oil futures drifted lower but largely preserved a rally after Energy Information Administration data showed U.S. crude inventories fell more than expected.
Here are some key events coming up this week:
Saudi Aramco’s initial public offering is scheduled to be priced on Thursday, with Riyadh looking to raise more than $25 billion.Friday brings the U.S. jobs report, where estimates are for non-farm payrolls to rise by 190,000 in November.
These are the main moves in markets:
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index increased 0.1% as of 8:34 a.m. London time.Futures on the S&P 500 Index climbed 0.1%.France’s CAC 40 Index advanced 0.3%.The MSCI Asia Pacific Index jumped 0.5%.The MSCI Emerging Market Index advanced 0.3%.
The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index dipped 0.1%.The British pound advanced 0.3% to $1.3144.The euro gained 0.1% to $1.1086.The Japanese yen was little changed at 108.90 per dollar.
The yield on 10-year Treasuries dipped less than one basis point to 1.77%.The yield on two-year Treasuries gained less than one basis point to 1.58%.Germany’s 10-year yield climbed less than one basis point to -0.31%.New Zealand’s 10-year yield advanced six basis points to 1.469%.
West Texas Intermediate crude dipped 0.3% to $58.24 a barrel.Iron ore declined 0.2% to $86.69 per metric ton.LME copper decreased 0.1% to $5,881 per metric ton.Sugar advanced 1.6% to $0.1306 a pound.
–With assistance from Cormac Mullen.
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Sam Potter at [email protected]
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