IFC Markets

Master Trader
Oct 31, 2012
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London (Great Britain)
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Dollar strengthens to year-and-half high

US equities sold off on Monday led by technology shares. The S&P 500 fell 2% to 2726.22. Dow Jones industrial lost 2.3% to 25387.18. The Nasdaq composite index dropped 2.8% to 7200.87 led by Apple down 5%. The dollar strengthening accelerated: the live dollar index data show the ICE US Dollar index, a measure of the dollar’s strength against a basket of six rival currencies, jumped 0.8% to 97.63, one and half year high but is lower currently. Futures on stock indices indicate higher openings today.


European stocks open mostly higher

European stocks extended losses on Monday on concerns about Italy budget deficit and lack of progress in Brexit negotiations. Both EUR/USD and GBP/USD accelerated declines but are gaining currently. The Stoxx Europe 600 index fell 1%. The DAX 30 dropped 1.8% to 11325.44 and France’s CAC 40 lost 1%. UK’s FTSE 100 slid 0.7% to 7053.08. Indices opened flat to 0.4% higher today.

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Italy’s budget deficit concerns came to fore again. Today is the last day Italy can submit a revised budget proposal to the European Union. The first proposal with a budget deficit target of 2.4% of GDP in 2019 was rejected by the EU, but Italy’s government said it could not revise the budget deficit target. If no change is resubmitted today the EU is expected to open an excessive deficit procedure and apply sanctions against Italy.


Chinese shares extend gains

Asian stock indices are mixed today. Nikkei fell 2.1% to 22810.52 as yen continued slide against the dollar. Chinese shares are higher on news China’s top trade negotiator Liu He may visit Washington as part of the preparations for the talks between US President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Argentina later this month: the Shanghai Composite Index is up 1% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index is 0.2% lower. Australia’s All Ordinaries Index turned 1.8% lower as the Australian dollar turned higher against the greenback.


Brent down after Trump tweet

Brent futures prices are edging higher today. Prices extended losses yesterday after President Trump tweeted he hoped Saudi Arabia and OPEC woldn’t cut oil production and prices should be much lower based on supply: January Brent crude slipped 0.1% to $70.12 a barrel on Monday.