Stocks Gain, Dollar Holds Advance, Italy in Focus: Markets Wrap
Asian stocks rounded out a volatile month with gains on Friday, with Japans Nikkei 225 Stock Average approaching its highest since 1991. Italys assets will be in focus after the countrys government set a wider budget deficit than some investors had anticipated.
The yen slide to the weakest level this year helped stoke Japanese shares, and equities advanced from Sydney to Shanghai in Asia. U.S. stock futures were little changed ahead of economic data including consumer spending, income and inflation. Treasuries and the dollar were little changed. Italian bonds opened lower after Italy set a 2.4 percent budget-deficit target.
This is a disappointing risk-off outcome, but lies in the grey zone rather than red zone in terms of escalation of stress to dangerous levels, Krishna Guha, head of central-bank strategy at Evercore ISI in Washington, wrote in a note on the Italian budget.
In Tokyo, investors are still watching whether the Bank of Japan tapers purchases of super-long bonds in its plan for October, out Friday afternoon.
Elsewhere, oil rose a day after the U.S. Energy secretary ruled out tapping the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, compounding concerns that sanctions on Iran will tighten markets.
These are the main moves in markets: Stocks
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.4 percent as of 3:07 p.m. Tokyo time. Topix index rose 1 percent and the Nikkei 225 gained 1.4 percent to the highest since January. Hong Kongs Hang Seng Index rose 0.4 percent. Kospi index fell 0.6 percent. Australias S&P/ASX 200 Index jumped 0.7 percent. Futures on the S&P 500 Index were little changed. Futures on the FTSE 100 were flat.
The Japanese yen sank 0.1 percent to 113.51 per dollar. The offshore yuan rose 0.1 percent to 6.8816 per dollar. The euro was little changed at $1.1643.Bonds The yield on 10-year Treasuries was little changed at 3.04 percent. Australias 10-year yield fell two basis points to 2.67 percent. Japans 10-year yield gained one basis point to 0.12 percent.
West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.3 percent to $72.32 a barrel. Gold rose 0.1 percent to $1,183.32 an ounce. LME copper rose 0.4 percent to $6,209 per metric ton.
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