Asian markets rally as earnings divert from inflation worry

20-Oct-2021 Intellasia | AFP | 5:02 AM Print This Post

European stock markets wavered Tuesday, with investors fearful that runaway inflation will spark rising global borrowing costs.

Frankfurt and London indices edged higher but Paris lapsed into negative territory.

Oil rose close to recent multi-year highs, as spiking gas prices persuaded many consumers to switch to crude.

Bitcoin, meanwhile, hit a peak of $62,961, less than $2,000 short of its April record, with a new security in the cryptocurrency due to begin trading Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange.

Tightening the screw

“Risk remains for a range of factors, including earnings, inflation and expectations central banks will tighten the screw,” said analyst Neil Wilson.

He added: “The Bank of England has put the cat among the pigeons with its hawkish talk, nudging markets to price in some hikes in the next year that just were not expected a few weeks ago.”

BoE governor Andrew Bailey warned Sunday that the bank might “have to act” to curb rising inflation, signalling its main interest rate might rise soon from its record-low 0.1 percent.

Elsewhere Tuesday, Asian bourses rose, extending a Wall Street rally as optimism over corporate earnings provided some respite from long-running worries about inflation, monetary tightening and signs of a slowing economic recovery.

A string of forecast-beating profit reports from businesses over the past week has provided a much-needed boost to investors who have for most of the year been waiting nervously for finance chiefs to start winding in the vast cash support put in place at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The positive readings have partly eased concerns about the impact on companies’ bottom lines from surging inflation, a brewing energy crisis and expectations that the era of cheap money will soon come to an end.

“Thus far we’ve seen companies post some fairly decent beats on the earnings front, and while it’s been notable that most have cited concerns about rising costs, as well as supply chain disruptions, we haven’t seen many significant profit downgrades yet,” said CMC Markets analyst Michael Hewson.

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq on Wall Street ended in positive territory, and Asia followed suit.

Oil markets built on a recent run-up in prices that has also been fuelled by tight supplies and expectations for a surge in demand through the northern hemisphere winter.

Key figures around 1030 GMT

London FTSE 100: UP 0.1 percent at 7,207.23 points

Frankfurt DAX: UP 0.1 percent at 15,485.04

Paris CAC 40: DOWN 0.1 percent at 6,669.95

euro O STOXX 50: UP 0.2 percent at 4,159.25

Tokyo Nikkei 225: UP 0.7 percent at 29,215.52 (close)

Hong Kong Hang Seng Index: UP 1.5 percent at 25,787.21 (close)

Shanghai Composite: UP 0.7 percent at 3,593.15 (close)

New York Dow: DOWN 0.1 percent at 35,258.61 (close)

euro/dollar: UP at $1.1670 from $1.1610 at 2100 GMT

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.3823 from $1.3726

euro/pound: DOWN at 84.35 from 84.59 pence

Dollar/yen: DOWN at 114.12 yen from 114.32 yen

Brent North Sea crude: UP 0.8 percent at $85.04 per barrel

West Texas Intermediate: UP 1.3 percent at $83.52 per barrel


Category: FinanceAsia

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