Asia: Marts track Wall Street rebound

10-Apr-2014 Intellasia | Business Times | Reuters | AFP | Bloomberg | AP | 8:43 AM Print This Post

Asia’s markets mostly rose yesterday Wednesday April 09 following a slight rebound on Wall Street but Tokyo took another hit from a stronger yen.
Oil prices eased after surging on Tuesday on renewed fears about tensions in Ukraine.
Tokyo tumbled 2.10 per cent, or 307.19 points, to 14,299.69, but Seoul rose 0.30 per cent, or 5.92 points, to 1,998.95.
Australian shares were supported by a surge in retailer David Jones after it received a takeover offer.
Sydney ended 0.98 per cent higher at 5,463.8 – its highest close since June 2008.
The upmarket department store surged 23 per cent to A$3.91 after recommending that shareholders accept a buyout from South Africa’s Woolworths that values it at A$2.15 billion.
In the afternoon, Shanghai added 0.10 per cent.
In New York Tuesday the three main indexes enjoyed a pick-up after suffering three successive sessions of losses led by the Nasdaq, as investors feared that big-name tech firms such as Facebook, Google and Tesla were overpriced.
The Nasdaq – which has lost more than five per cent since the start of March – rose 0.81 per cent, while the Dow edged up 0.06 per cent and the S&P 500 rose 0.38 per cent.
In Japan the Nikkei sank for a fourth straight session as the yen strengthened after central bank chief Haruhiko Kuroda dismissed any hopes of further monetary easing soon.
Kuroda told a news conference on Tuesday that the economy was getting back on track as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s big-spending, easy-money policy drive kicks in.
He also sought to allay fears over the higher sales tax that began on April 1, saying it would not hurt a nascent recovery despite warnings to the contrary.

HONGKONG: SHARES closed 1.09 per cent higher yesterday, in line with a broad regional uptick after Wall Street ended a three-day losing streak.
The benchmark Hang Seng Index rose 246.20 points to 22,843.17 on turnover of HK$70.97 billion.
Shares of Internet giant, Tencent, climbed 2.75 per cent to HK$523.5 and China Mobile added 1.24 per cent to HK$73.7.
Bank of China gained 1.15 per cent to HK$3.52.
Macau casino operator Sands China added 3.4 per cent to HK$60.90 and banking giant ICBC gained 0.61 per cent to HK$4.93.

SINGAPORE: THE Straits Times Index (STI) ended 5.83 points higher, or 0.18 per cent, to 3209.92, taking the year-to-date performance to 1.42 per cent.
The FTSE ST Mid Cap Index gained 0.41 per cent while the FTSE ST Small Cap Index gained 0.52 per cent. Among the top active stocks SingTel shed 0.27 per cent, Golden-Agri gained 3.39 per cent, AusGroup added 22.89 per cent, DBS increased 0.12 per cent and Noble Group dropped 3.52 pr cent.
The outperforming stocks were represented by the FTSE ST Technology Index, which added 1.00 per cent.

KUALA LUMPUR: SHARE prices on Bursa Malaysia rebounded from recent losses to end higher yesterday on renewed buying interests, led by consumer stocks, dealers said.
A dealer said among them were Nestle which rose RM1.28 to RM67.98, BAT which added 76 sen to RM60.36, and Dutch Lady Milk Industries which soared 50 sen to RM47.90.
The benchmark FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI (FBM KLCI) was 3.44 points higher at 1,855.75.
Among volume leaders, PDZ Holdings inched one sen to 14 sen, while Luster Industries added half-a-sen to 11 sen. GSB Group fell half-a-sen to 11.5 sen.
The Industrial Index rose 17.75 points to 3,196.56, the Plantation Index added 8.909 points to 8,943.56 and the Finance Index increased 13 points to 16,895.8.
The FBM Emas Index increased 32.26 points to 12,857.33, FBMT100 Index rose 27.53 points to 12,504.71, FBM 70 Index advanced 47.77 points to 14,053.8, while the FBM ACE Index added 15.31 points to 6,793.37.
Market breadth was positive with gainers outnumbering losers by 462 to 336, while 351 counters were unchanged, 460 untraded and 15 others suspended.
Turnover rose to 2.22 billion shares valued at RM2.38 billion from Tuesday’s 1.89 billion shares valued at RM2.09 billion.
Meanwhile, FBM KLCI futures contracts on Bursa Malaysia Derivatives closed mostly higher on followthrough buying support.
Spot month April 2014 and May 2014 rose five points each to 1,858 and 1,852, respectively, June 2014 added three points to 1,850.5, but September 2014 slipped two points to 1,847.5.
However, turnover declined to 5,879 lots from 6,738 lots on Tuesday, while open interest dropped to 35,048 contracts from 36,496 contracts on Tuesday.

In other markets:
* Taipei rose 0.48 per cent, or 42.32 points, to 8,930.57.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co was unchanged at T$119.0 while leading smartphone lens maker Largan Precision Co closed 2.82 per cent higher at T$1,640.
* Wellington rose 0.71 per cent, or 35.85 points, to 5,067.41.
Fletcher Building was up 1.16 per cent at NZ$9.59 and Air New Zealand steady at NZ$2.05.
* Manila was closed for a public holiday.

VIETNAM was closed for a public holiday

EUROPE: European shares rebounded yesterday, led by gains in carmakers, although some traders said that caution ahead of the European earnings season could curb the market’s progress.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index rose 0.4 per cent to 1,337.91 points in late trading, bouncing back after falling to its lowest level in more than a week in the previous session.
The eurozone’s blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index also edged up by 0.1 per cent to 3,181.74 points.
The STOXX Europe 600 Automobile & Auto Parts Index was the best-performing equity sector in Europe, rising 1.3 per cent as Volkswagen and Porsche both benefited from an upgrade by Bernstein.
In Paris, the CAC 40 index won 0.50 per cent compared with Tuesday’s closing values to 4,446.82 points and Frankfurt’s DAX 30 gained 0.43 per cent to 9,531.47.

AMERICA: Once again, it was the Federal Reserve to the rescue for the stock market.

Major U.S. indexes rose broadly Wednesday, helped by a report out of the nation’s central bank that showed Fed policymakers want to be absolutely certain the U.S. economy had recovered before starting to raise interest rates.

Confident that the Fed won’t be raising rates until sometime next year, investors once again embraced some of the market’s more risky names. Biotechnology and technology stocks, beaten down over the past week, were among the biggest gainers.

Wednesday’s trading had one broad theme: risk on. Investors sold utility and telecommunications stocks — which are usually less volatile, rich-dividend companies — and piled into areas that typically benefit from a growing economy: materials makers, industrial companies and technology stocks.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 181.04 points, or 1.1 percent, to 16,437.18. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index jumped 20.22 points, or 1.1 percent, to 1,872.18 and the technology-heavy Nasdaq composite rose the most, up 70.91 points, or 1.7 percent, to 4,183.90.

Facebook rose the most in the S&P 500, jumping 7.3 percent, followed closely by biotech company Vertex Pharmaceuticals, up 7 percent. Other names that saw renewed investor interest were biotech companies Boston Scientific, Biogen and Celgene and in technology, Priceline, Red Hat and ETrade.

The Dow Jones Transportation Average jumped 1.6 percent. Investors closely watch the “Dow Transports,” as the index is nicknamed, on the theory that a growing economy will mean companies will have to ship more products, increasing the profits of transportation companies like airlines, railroads and trucking companies.

At their March policy meeting, Fed policymakers debated over when the bank should start raising interest rates. Traditionally the Fed’s main policy tool for regulating the U.S. economy, short-term rates have been near zero since 2008 in an effort to encourage borrowing and economic growth, all of which is good for stocks.

Now that the economy has mostly recovered from the recession, an increasing number of policymakers believe it’s time for the Fed to start raising rates. The question is when.

“We know higher interest rates are coming, but we don’t know exactly when, whether it’s 2015 or 2016,” said Tom di Galoma, head of fixed income rates at ED&F MAN Capital Markets.

Investors always keep a close eye on the Fed, but they’re particularly sensitive these days because the central bank is in the process of winding down its economic stimulus policies. Investors worry that the bank might act too quickly and choke off the economic recovery.

The Dow soared 192 points on Feb. 11 after Janet Yellen, in her first public comments since taking over as head of the Fed from Ben Bernanke, said she would continue the Fed’s market-friendly, low-interest rate policies.

Confident that interest rates and inflation would remain low, investors bought bonds Wednesday, particularly bonds that have shorter maturities. The yield on the two-year Treasury note dropped to 0.36 percent from 0.39 percent late Tuesday, a relatively big move for that security. Yields on the three-year and five-year notes made similar moves.

Investors also got a dose of good news from Corporate America.

Aluminum giant Alcoa reported an adjusted first-quarter profit that was well ahead of analysts’ forecasts. The aluminum maker is typically the first large U.S. corporation to report its results every quarter. Alcoa rose 47 cents, or 4 percent, to $13.

Alcoa’s results helped push other mining and materials stocks higher. U.S. Steel rose 3 percent; industrial parts company W.W. Grainger climbed 2 percent and the auto parts company Delphi increased 3 percent.

Investors expect that corporate earnings for the first three months of the year will be held back by the severe winter weather that plagued most of the country. Earnings are expected to fall 1.6 percent from a year earlier, according to financial data provider FactSet. If that forecast proves correct, it would be the first time corporate profits have fallen since the third quarter of 2012.

“We’re going to see lousy results, but I think we’ll still see optimistic forecasts from companies,” said Jack Ablin, chief investment officer with BMO Private Bank in Chicago. “Companies lost a lot of business in the first couple months of the year, but most of that business, I suspect, will come back.”

In other company news:

- Intuitive Surgical, the maker of robotic surgical equipment, slumped $33.20, or 7 percent, to $456.64. The company warned that first-quarter sales would be drastically lower than previously expected.

- La Quinta Holdings, the parent company of the hotel chain La Quinta Inns, rose 12 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $17.12 on its first day of trading. La Quinta is owned by the private equity firm Blackstone Group and was taken public this week in a $650 million IPO.

Benchmark Currency Rates



1.3865 0.0098 1.6813 1.1377 0.9200 0.9434 0.1290


0.7214 0.0071 1.2129 0.8208 0.6636 0.6804 0.0930


101.9200 141.2700 171.3700 115.9700 93.7650 96.1360 13.1465


0.5948 0.8245 0.0058 0.6767 0.5472 0.5611 0.0767


0.8789 1.2184 0.0086 1.4777 0.8086 0.8291 0.1134


1.0869 1.5067 0.0107 1.8277 1.2368 1.0253 0.1402


1.0600 1.4697 0.0104 1.7823 1.2060 0.9751 0.1367


7.7534 10.7477 0.0761 13.0357 8.8206 7.1331 7.3138


Source: Bloomberg


Category: FinanceAsia

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