Asian Stocks Track U.S. Gains as Tech Rebounds: Markets Wrap

Asian stocks opened firmer Thursday after U.S. equities rebounded from a three-day rout, with buyers pushing the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 to its best day since April. The dollar steadied after declines.

Shares rose in Japan, South Korea and Australia. S&P 500 futures fluctuated after the index rose the most since June, though finished well off session highs. Nasdaq 100 contracts advanced. The overnight Nasdaq gains followed an 11% rout that took it down to its 50-day moving average, a closely-watched technical level. Treasuries were little changed. The pound steady after recent declines on worries that talks could collapse over changes to the Brexit withdrawal deal.

With volatility remaining elevated, investors will be on guard for any signs the selling in stocks may resume. Thursday brings the European Central Bank’s latest policy decision and weekly jobless claims data in the U.S.

“We are in a recovery but this recovery is about to slow down,” David Kelly, chief global strategist at JPMorgan Asset Management, said on Bloomberg TV. “It’s important for investors at this stage to be disciplined and realize that just because we’ve seen some good economic numbers and because the market seems to be OK here, don’t take your eye off the ball.”

Elsewhere, crude oil edged lower and gold was little changed.

Here are some key events coming up:

  • The ECB is expected to hold rates steady on Thursday but indicate that downside risks have intensified, suggesting further easing is possible before year-end.
  • The U.S. releases initial jobless claims numbers Thursday.
  • U.S. CPI data is due Friday, with consumer prices expected to have risen in August.

These are the main moves in markets:

Stocks

  • S&P 500 futures were little changed as of 9:09 a.m. in Tokyo. The gauge rose 2% on Wednesday.
  • Topix index rose 0.6%.
  • Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index gained 1.2%.
  • Kospi index climbed 1.3%.
  • Hang Seng futures added 0.9%.

Currencies

  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was flat after falling 0.4%.
  • The euro bought $1.1811.
  • The yen was at 106.24 per dollar.
  • The offshore yuan traded at 6.8328 per dollar.
  • The pound was at $1.3002.

Bonds

  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries dipped to 0.69%.

Commodities

  • West Texas Intermediate crude fell 1% to $37.67 a barrel.
  • Gold was at $1,947.66 an ounce, little changed.

— With assistance by Katherine Greifeld, and Claire Ballentine

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