Technology firms continued to lead a rally in New York overnight, sending the Nasdaq to yet another all-time high, while the S&P 500 closed just short of a record finish as frustrated investors wait for Democrats and Republicans to hammer out a much-needed virus financial support package.
Asia’s main stock indices steadied Tuesday, while the dollar slid versus its main rivals and oil prices dipped.
“The dollar continues to fall with investors expecting the Fed to maintain its expansionary monetary policy for a long time owing to concerns the persistence of COVID-19 will weigh on economic recovery,” noted Fawad Razaqzada, market analyst with ThinkMarkets.
“The greenback is also suppressed because of the lack of haven demand for the reserve currency, with investors evidently favouring foreign currencies, gold and bitcoin,” he added.
The American stimulus stand-off is one of a number of issues nagging markets, with China-US tensions continuing to sour and coronavirus fallout in full view.
– Trade, stimulus tensions –
Washington-Beijing unrest meanwhile took a new twist, with the US expanding sanctions on Chinese telecoms giant Huawei to further limit its access to computer chips and other US-made products.
While there are concerns raised tensions between the US and China could affect the superpowers’ recently signed trade pact, such fears have been played down by both sides.
“For the moment, the fact the… trade deal remains in place, and will do while the two sides choose not to hold their six-month review that was to have taken place last weekend, is seen as overriding the building evidence of a technology cold war now under way,” said National Australia Bank’s Ray Attrill.
Analysts said there was not too much concern on markets about possible tax hikes if Joe Biden beats President Donald Trump in the race for the White House.
The Democratic Convention kicked off Monday and “the theme should be that Biden will be good for the economy,” said Edward Moya at OANDA.
“Wall Street seems convinced that Biden’s tax policy will not kill the stock market… a Biden presidency could offer greater certainty and stability for the economy,” Moya added.
– Key figures around 1145 GMT –
London – FTSE 100: UP 0.2 percent at 6,142.33 points
Frankfurt – DAX 30: UP 0.8 percent at 13,029.71
Paris – CAC 40: UP 0.4 percent at 4,993.03
EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.7 percent at 3,327.82
Tokyo – Nikkei 225: DOWN 0.2 percent at 23,051.08 (close)
Hong Kong – Hang Seng: UP 0.1 percent at 25,367.38 (close)
Shanghai – Composite: UP 0.4 percent at 3,451.09 (close)
New York – Dow: DOWN 0.3 percent at 27,844.91 (close Monday)
Euro/dollar: UP at $1.1903 from $1.1876 at 2050 GMT
Dollar/yen: DOWN at 105.56 yen from 105.99 yen
Pound/dollar: UP at $1.3164 from $1.3107
Euro/pound: DOWN at 90.39 pence from 90.58 pence
West Texas Intermediate: DOWN 0.6 percent at $42.65 per barrel
Brent North Sea crude: DOWN 0.3 percent at $45.22 per barrel