Business Maverick: Stocks rise in Asia as Alibaba leads tech rebound: markets wrap

Business Maverick: Stocks rise in Asia as Alibaba leads tech rebound: markets wrap

A global share gauge pushed toward the highest level since early June, after a US rally triggered by earnings and robust economic data. US futures fluctuated as traders weighed how much further the revival in equities from bear-market lows can go. The dollar was little changed. 

Investors on Wednesday warmed to earnings and buyback announcements from Moderna and PayPal as well as surprise US service-sector growth. Almost 75% of US firms have so far beaten earnings estimates. Jitters over US-China ties faded after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi departed Taiwan.

Federal Reserve officials again signalled they will do what’s required to cool high inflation with rate increases even if that raises the risk of recession. Oil edged higher amid signs of slowing demand in a US inventory report. Gold advanced and Bitcoin fell.  

Global stocks have now rebounded some 10% from a June low, reducing year-to-date losses to about 15%. The big debate is whether that points to complacency given the bond market is flashing a warning of an economic slowdown.

“The volatility is not over and a lot of data is still out there, it’s still going to matter,” Ann Miletti, head of active equity at Allspring Global Investments, said on Bloomberg Television. “I would still focus on quality here because there is a lot of choppiness to come, a lot of answers we still need.”

Taiwan tension remains among the uncertainties. China is due to kick off military drills starting at noon local time to illustrate its ability to surround the island in a show of force following Pelosi’s trip.

Later in Europe, the UK is set to add to a global wave of monetary tightening that’s putting the brakes on the world economy. The Bank of England is expected to join some 70 other institutions around the world in delivering a half-point increase in borrowing costs.

What to watch this week:

  • BOE rate decision, Thursday
  • US initial jobless claims, trade, Thursday
  • Cleveland Fed president Loretta Mester due to speak, Thursday
  • US employment report for July, Friday

Some of the main moves in markets:

Stocks

  • S&P 500 futures were down 0.1% as of 12:00 p.m. in Tokyo. The S&P 500 rose 1.6%
  • Nasdaq 100 futures fell 0.1%. The Nasdaq 100 rose 2.7%
  • Japan’s Topix index was down 0.1%
  • South Korea’s Kospi index rose 0.3%
  • Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index added 1.9%
  • China’s Shanghai Composite index rose 0.5%
  • Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index increased 0.2%
  • Euro Stoxx 50 futures increased 0.1%

Currencies

  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was steady
  • The euro was at $1.0165
  • The Japanese yen was at 133.77 per dollar, up 0.1%
  • The offshore yuan was at 6.7605 per dollar

Bonds

  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries rose one basis point to 2.72%
  • Australia’s 10-year yield rose five basis points to 3.13%

Commodities

  • West Texas Intermediate crude was at $91.05 a barrel, up 0.4%
  • Gold was at $1,767.99 an ounce, up 0.3%. BM

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