Monday 01.45 GMT
What you need to know
- Equities retrace sell-off losses
- Dollar holds near three-year low
- Gold closes in on 18-month high
Japanese stocks marched higher on Monday as global equities continued to follow Wall Street’s recovery from the sell-off two weeks earlier.
While most major bourses in the region remain offline for the lunar new year holiday, the Topix in Tokyo added 1.5 per cent in early trading, and was up 4.5 per cent from a four-month intraday low touched on February 14.
All market segments climbed in Tokyo but utilities, up 2.4 per cent, showed the biggest gains, followed by financials, which were 2 per cent higher.
Stocks in Sydney were also in positive territory with the ASX/S&P 200 up 0.5 per cent as a 1 per cent fall for energy companies was offset by gains from the other major sectors.
The Kospi Composite was up 0.8 per cent in Seoul with the industrials, energy and financials segments all rising more than 1.9 per cent.
The moves came after a rally on Wall Street last week with the Nasdaq Composite, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 each adding more than 4 per cent.
Forex and fixed income
The dollar index, measuring the greenback against a basket of peers, was off 0.1 per cent on Monday. The index closed on Friday up 0.6 per cent on the day but remained off 1.5 per cent for the five days and near its lowest in three years.
In what is expected to be a light day for foreign exchange and fixed income trading — Hong Kong, China and the US are on holiday — other currencies mostly firmed against the dollar. The euro and the Australian dollar each added 0.2 per cent to $1.2425 and $0.7923, respectively. The New Zealand dollar was 0.1 per cent higher at $0.7396. The yen was up by the same amount at ¥106.20, having pulled back from a 15-month high touched last week.
In the debt markets, yield on the 10-year Australian government bond was down 4 basis points at 2.884 per cent while the equivalent Japanese note was unmoved at 0.051 per cent.
Commodities were higher as oil and gold continued to find support from the weaker US currency.
Brent crude, the international benchmark, was up 0.9 per cent at $65.39 a barrel and US marker West Texas Intermediate was 1.2 per cent higher at $62.40 a barrel.
The price of gold was not far off an 18-month high on Monday, up 0.2 per cent in early Asia trading at $1,350 an ounce. The metal on Friday touched near the highest intraday level since mid-2016, briefly breaking the $1,360 mark on the back of rising inflation and a weaker dollar.
For market updates and comment follow us on Twitter @FTMarkets