Global Market Report - March 29, 2018

The US dollar's recovery on Wednesday helped give many global markets a lift today

Morningstar 11/04/2561

Asia

Markets in Asia-Pacific managed to gain some ground on Thursday despite uncertain signals from Wall Street, where technology-focused exchanged Nasdaq remained under the biggest pressure.

In the absence of any strong domestic data to drive sentiment, currency factors once again played their part in moving Chinese and Japanese stocks higher. With the US dollar rising on better-than-expected economic growth figures for the end of the year, Japan’s Nikkei 225 and Topix were higher on the day as the yen retreated.

But in percentage terms, China’s CSI 300 was the biggest riser in the region, helped by a gain of over 1% on the Shanghai Composite Index. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was modestly higher ahead.

Europe

Yesterday the FTSE 100 was helped by a near 20% rise in the share price of takeover target and pharma giant Shire (SHP). The company’s share price dropped back a touch on Thursday.

Bullish investors will be keen to put this quarter behind them as the FTSE 100 is set for a drop of around 5% and a fall of nearly 3% for the month. The Easter break, with Friday and Monday seeing major European exchanges will give traders a chance to digest the events of the previous weeks, which including a US rate hike, trade war anxieties, a tech bloodbath – but also the chance of North Korea coming in from the cold.

North America

US stock markets have had a torrid week, with tech stocks in focus for sellers. Friday sees a pause in trading in the US and Canada for Good Friday.

Canada’s GDP for January will be in view today: analysts expect the economy to have grown that month by 2.9% from January 2017 – down from growth of 3.3% in December 2017.

In the United States, the Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) data will also be available for February – giving an indication of how inflation changed at the start of the year. Weekly jobless figures to March 24 will also be released.

 

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