US stocks grind higher with weak US productivity data

August 10, 2016

Investor awaiting for "OPEC Oil Output-Freeze" Decision.

US stocks grind higher with weak US productivity data

This article is originally referred from IFC Markets Market Overview

US stocks inched higher on Tuesday as weak productivity data capped the gains for market indexes. The dollar weakened as the unexpected fall in productivity was viewed as a negative development for a possible decision by Federal Reserve to raise rates later in the year.

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, slipped 0.24% to 96.101. The Dow Jones industrial average closed up less than 0.1% to 18533.00 led by Disney and Pfizer while a 0.7% declined in DuPont limited the gains. The S&P 500 added less than a point settling at 2181.74 with the gains in health-care and consumer-staples stocks offsetting losses in energy and materials sectors as oil prices fell. The Nasdaq index rose 0.2% to 5225.48, a record high.

The 0.5% fall in labor productivity in the second quarter, the third straight quarterly decline, weighed on market sentiment. In other economic news wholesale inventories rose a revised 0.3% in June, up from the initial estimate of no change, and National Federation of Independent Business small-business index for July rose 0.1 point to 94.6, continuing a recent uptrend. Today at 13:00 CET Mortgage Applications will be released in US. At 16:00 CET Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary results for June will be published. The tentative outlook is positive.

European stocks ended higher on Tuesday supported by positive earnings reports. The euro strengthened against the dollar while British Pound fell as data showed UK trade deficit widened in June and manufacturing output fell 0.3% while industrial production rose 0.1%. The Stoxx Europe 600 index rose 0.9%, the fifth winning session in a row.

Energy shares were among best performing after crude oil prices rallied following the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries statement on Monday it will hold an “informal” meeting in late September. Germany’s DAX 30 rallied 2.5% settling at 10692.90, entering into bull market territory defined as a rise of at least 20% from a recent low. The DAX hit its 2016 closing low of 8752.87 on February 11. France’s CAC 40 rose 1.2% and UK’s FTSE 100 gained 0.6%. No important economic data are expected in euro-zone today.

Asian stocks are retreating after hitting one year high today. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares excluding Japan rose 0.35% to the highest level since August 2015. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index is down 0.15% with Shanghai Composite Index down 0.21%. Australia’s S&P ASX 200 is down 0.15%. Nikkei ended 0.18% lower today as yen strengthened after weak US data and investors booked gains ahead of a Japanese holiday. Markets in Japan will be closed on Thursday for a public holiday, with some investors planning to take Friday off as well for a long weekend.

Oil futures prices are extending losses today after slipping the previous day as the support to prices due to a potential OPEC decision at a September meeting on measures to restore stability in the oil market failed to offset pressure from crude oversupply concerns. October Brent crude fell 0.9% to $44.94 a barrel on London’s ICE Futures exchange on Tuesday. At 16:30 CET today US Crude Oil Inventories will be released by the Energy Information Administration.

Gold is rising today as dollar retreats after weak US productivity data.

Original Source: IFC Markets Market Overview

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