Asian Stocks Rise on Vaccine Optimism; Dollar Dips: Markets Wrap

(Bloomberg) — Asian stocks began the week with gains as traders took solace from progress toward a vaccine and signs of a recovering global economy. The dollar dipped.

South Korean equities outperformed Monday after encouraging trade data, putting the Kospi index on course for a record close. S&P 500 futures rose along with Asia-Pacific shares, while global equities remain within a whisker of the all-time high set earlier this month.

Vaccinations against Covid-19 in the U.S. will “hopefully” start in less than three weeks, according to the head of the federal government’s program to accelerate a vaccine. Japan is shut for a holiday and Treasuries won’t trade until the London open.



chart, histogram: Global stocks treading water after reaching all-time high


© Bloomberg
Global stocks treading water after reaching all-time high

Successes in vaccine trials have bolstered hopes for the eventual rollout of effective shots across the world, though some investor optimism has been tempered by a continuing surge in coronavirus cases and deaths in many regions, including the U.S.

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“There is a lot of enthusiasm over the vaccine news and rightly so — as soon as we can get something that is very effective distributed widely, the sooner we can get back to ordinary life,” Brian Jacobsen, multi-asset strategist at Wells Fargo Asset Management, said on Bloomberg TV. “The problem, from our perspective, is we first have to get through winter and this is setting us up for some downside economic surprises.”

There are growing predictions the Federal Reserve will unveil more monetary action when it meets in mid-December, after the central bank said it will comply with a Treasury Department request to return unused funds meant to backstop five emergency lending programs.

The Telegraph reported the U.K. will announce Monday that quarantine restrictions will ease in time for Christmas, while the French government plans a three-phase reduction in lockdown measures from next month. Hong Kong and Singapore delayed a travel bubble after cases spiked in Hong Kong.

Here are some key events coming up:

Video: China to see ‘very strong’ consumption recovery as pandemic eases: BNP Paribas (CNBC)

China to see ‘very strong’ consumption recovery as pandemic eases: BNP Paribas

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UP NEXT

Minutes of the most recent Federal Open Market Committee meeting are due Wednesday.U.S. jobless claims, GDP and personal spending data come Wednesday.U.K. expected on Wednesday to deliver the government’s spending plans for next year.Thursday sees a policy decision and briefing from the Bank of Korea.U.S. celebrates the Thanksgiving holiday on Thursday.The week ends with Black Friday, the traditional start of the U.S. holiday shopping season.

These are the main moves in markets:

Stocks

S&P 500 futures added 0.3% as of 12:18 p.m. in Tokyo. The gauge fell 0.7% on Friday.South Korea’s Kospi index rose 1.9%.Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index gained 0.5%.Hang Seng index dipped 0.2%Shanghai Composite index rose 0.5%. Euro Stoxx 50 futures added 0.4%.

Currencies

The yen was at 103.74 per dollar, up 0.1%.The offshore yuan was little changed at 6.5516 per dollar.The euro gained 0.1% to $1.1874.The pound rose 0.4% to $1.3325.

Bonds

The yield on 10-year Treasuries ended last week at 0.82%. Futures were little changed.Australia’s 10-year yield was at 0.86%.

Commodities

West Texas Intermediate crude was steady at $42.41 a barrel.Gold was at $1,873.72 an ounce, up 0.1%.

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