Global stocks rise as low Chinese inflation and Japan rebound help offset Iraq worries


BEIJING, China – Global stocks rose sharply Monday as subdued Chinese inflation, a rebound by Japanese markets and the latest easing of tensions over Ukraine helped offset unease about Iraq.

KEEPING SCORE: In morning European trade, German’s DAX surged 1.4 per cent to 9,132.36 and France’s CAC-40 added 1 per cent to 4,189.48. Britain’s FTSE 100 gained 0.8 per cent to 6,619.15. Futures for the Dow Jones industrial average and the broader Standard & Poor’s 500 both rose 0.3 per cent. On Friday, the Dow added 1.1 per cent and the S&P was up 1.2 per cent.

ASIA’S DAY: Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 soared 2.4 per cent to 15,130.52 points and China’s Shanghai Composite Index gained 1.4 per cent to 2,224.65. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 1.3 per cent to 24,650.30. Seoul’s Kospi was up 0.4 per cent at 2,039.37. India’s Sensex rose 0.8 per cent to 25,526.87 and Sydney’s S&P ASX 200 added 0.4 per cent to 5,457.

CHINESE INFLATION: China’s consumer in July stayed at 2.3 per cent, well below the official target for the year of 3.5 per cent. That gives the central bank room to ease access to credit if needed to shore up economic growth, which was 7.5 per cent in the latest quarter. That would lower the cost of financing for stock trading, helping to support markets.

JAPAN’S REBOUND: Japanese stocks rose as investors hunted bargains following the Nikkei’s 5 per cent slide last week.

GEOPOLITICS: After taking a jab at the West with last week’s ban on food imports, Russia called an end to military exercises near Ukraine and withdrew troops to their bases. Fighting raged in the city of Donetsk as government forces closed in on the rebel stronghold and insurgents backed away from a cease-fire offer. In Iraq, U.S. warplanes attacked Islamic State militants near the northern city of Irbil, capital of the Kurdish region, in hopes of limiting their advance and keeping them away from oil fields.

THE QUOTE: “Overall, we saw a return of risk appetite with flows returning to equities while safe havens like the yen, gold and treasuries slid,” said Desmond Chua of CMC Markets in a report.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude oil for September delivery rose 13 cents to $97.78 in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, boosted by unease about possible disruptions to supplies from Iraq and Russia. The contract rose 31 cents to settle at $97.65 in the previous session.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 102.09 yen from the previous session’s 102.05 yen. The euro declined to $1.3396 from $1.3411.

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