Global equities markets higher on session after losses

| March 6, 2007 | 0 Comments

Global equities markets higher on session after losses

Global equities markets were higher on Tuesday. Asia led the charge, with most markets higher. China’s Shanghai composite index added almost 2 percent to close at 2,840.18. In India, the Sensex gained 2.27 percent to 12,697.09, while the Strait Times Index in Singapore was 2.05 percent higher to 3036.52. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong was up 2.11 percent to 19,058.56. In Japan, the Nikkei 225 added 1.2 percent to 16,844.50, while the Topix index gained 1.8 percent to 1,692.54. The steel sector was significantly higher in Japan on lower energy prices.

Europe followed Asia higher. The FTSE Eurofirst 300 gained 0.98 percent to 1,460.47. In Paris, the CAC 40 closed at 5,437.13, a gain of 0.97 percent, while Frankfurt’s Xetra Dax added 0.92 percent to 6,595. The pharmaceuticals sector was up on approval in the United States of a new blood pressure treatment from Novartis (NYSE: NVS).

In London, the FTSE 100 added 1.32 percent to 6,138.5, while the FTSE 250 was 1.43 percent higher to 11,013. Miners were higher after Xstrata (LSE: XTA) reported that its 2006 operating profit was at $8.3 billion, better than expected and more than double the year before.

The New York equities markets joined the gains enjoyed in other regions. At midday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 0.8 percent higher to 12,148.78, while the Nasdaq Composite added 1.4 percent to 2,373.72 and the S&P 500 gained 1.1 percent to 1,388.56. Mortgage lenders were higher, as were banks and brokerages. Technology-connected shares also saw gains.

Oil prices were a bit higher after steep declines on Monday after the Energy Information Agency raised its forecast on average prices. The EIA also revised its predictions for global demand growth, but that was offset by expectations that supply growth would also decline. Metals prices were up, as well.

The Japanese yen weakened with gains in equities markets and as the liquidation of carry trades slowed. The euro was stronger on the confirmation that the economy there grew by 0.9 percent in the fourth quarter and as the numbers on third-quarter growth were revised upwards. Sterling was also stronger as a new survey showed that retail sales in the UK were up by 5.6 percent in February compared to the same time period last year. The US dollar was hurt by the news that factory orders and pending home sales were both down more than expected in January.

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