Morning Spread

Morning Spread

Thursday 10th April 2014
IndexLevelChg (%)
UK Market6682.79+0.71
Dow Indust Avg16437.18+1.11
S&P 5001872.18+1.09
Nasdaq Composite4183.90+1.72
Nikkei 22514300.12unch
Hang Seng23173.21+1.44
IndexLevelChg (%)
Nymex 1m103.5-0.10
Gold Spot1320.03+0.63
GBP/USD1.6773+0.16
GBP/EUR1.2105+0.19
EUR/USD1.3858+0.35
USD/JPY101.73-0.15

Asian markets were broadly higher on investor optimism following the US Federal Reserve comments overnight and also plans to link two of China’s equity indices. In Australia the currency hit a new high for the year and the banking sector was also very positive. ANZ Banking was up for the eleventh straight session and closed at an all time high up 1% on the day. Commonwealth Bank was up 0.52% and both National Australia Bank and Westpac gained 0.46%. The equity market news in Hong Kong saw a strong performance from the broking sector with Citic Securities up 11%, Haitong Securities gained 12% and Huatai Securities was up just over 6%.

In the US there were decent gains across the board with Alcoa climbing nearly 4% on the positive earnings release. The healthcare sector was also in strong shape with Regeneron Pharmaceuticals up nearly 7%, Merck was up 3.75% and Amgen was up 1.7%. Other notable risers included Facebook up 7.25%, Morgan Stanley was up 2.33% and Boeing was up 2.2%. The only real sector which experienced weakness was the auto makers, as the broker Morgan Stanley downgraded General Motors. It questioned the speed of the replacement cycle and greater competition. The shares were down 2.7% and Ford was also lower, with the shares down 1.6% on the day.

Europe is forging ahead this morning with most indices up 0.7% on the day. Banks such as Credit Suisse are up 1.6% and luxury brands are also being boosted by the optimism with LVMH up 4.1% and Richemont is up 2%. LVMH is being driven by strong fashion and leather sales despite a struggling cognac market in China. Auto stocks are also in focus with Peugeot up 1.5%, Renault up 1.8% and Porsche up 1%. In the UK, Marks & Spencer is up nearly 2% as the retailer announced sales ahead of expectations, although management cited pressure on margins. The mining sector is strong with Fresnillo up 2.2% and Randgold Resources is up nearly 2%.