Stocks Rise in Asia on Trump-Kim Summit; Yen Drops: Markets Wrap
Asian stocks rose and the yen slumped on news of an agreement for an unprecedented summit between the leaders of the U.S. and North Korea, defusing geopolitical concerns tied to the nuclear-armed dictatorship in northeast Asia.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index climbed, led by a jump in Korean stocks though gains pared as the session progressed. Equities also benefited from optimism that President Donald Trumps tariffs on steel and aluminum were narrower than some had feared. The announcement at the White House that Trump has accepted an invitation to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, with the meeting coming by May, fed the risk-on sentiment. The yen fell the most in more than two weeks, even as the Bank of Japan stayed the course with its monetary stimulus on Friday.
Gold retreated, while Treasury yields ticked higher alongside the dollar. The euro was little changed and bund yields also rose. The summit news overshadowed a warning from China that it will take strong measures to counter U.S. trade tariffs. Later, investors will be watching the monthly U.S. employment data for clues on the outlook for monetary policy.
Elsewhere, West Texas oil steadied around the lowest level in three weeks as rising U.S. supply and dollar strength eclipsed bullish demand outlooks. Bitcoin fell below $9,000.
Here are the key events for the remainder of this week:
The Chinese Peoples Political Consultative Conference runs through March 15 and overlaps with the National Peoples Congress meetings in Beijing, through March 20. U.S. monthly payrolls data come Friday.And these are the main moves in markets:
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.3 percent as of 4:10 p.m. Tokyo time. Topix index added 0.3 percent. Hong Kongs Hang Seng Index jumped 1 percent. Kospi index rallied 1.1 percent. Australias S&P/ASX 200 Index rose 0.3 percent. Futures on the S&P 500 Index fell 0.1 percent.
The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index rose 0.1 percent. The Japanese yen fell 0.4 percent to 106.68 per dollar. The euro rose less than 0.05 percent to $1.2315.
The yield on 10-year Treasuries rose one basis point to 2.87 percent. Japans 10-year yield fell less than one basis point to 0.052 percent. Australias 10-year yield fell two basis points to 2.786 percent.
West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.2 percent to $60.25 a barrel. Gold fell 0.3 percent to $1,318.51 an ounce. LME copper fell 0.6 percent to $6,792.00 per metric ton.
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