SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of—Global shares rose Friday with Europe off to a strong start as investors reassessed an unexpectedly wide array of stimulus measures announced a day earlier by the European Central Bank.
Keeping score: Britain’s FTSE 100 rose 1.5 per cent to 6,130.39 and Germany’s DAX gained 2 per cent to 9,693.05. France’s CAC 40 advanced 2.2 per cent to 4,446.65. Wall Street was also set to begin on a positive note with Dow futures up 0.8 per cent. S&P futures were flat.
Europe watch: Comments by bank chief Mario Draghi on Thursday underscored the weakness of the 19-country euro-zone and the desperation of monetary authorities to act. But after initially heading southward, Asian markets mostly bounced back, followed by the upbeat opening in Europe.
Analyst’s take: “Running out of grenades isn’t a bad thing,” IG market strategist Evan Lucas said in a commentary, referring to the conviction among some commentators that the ECB has “run out of easing ammunition.” He added, “Draghi mainly met expectations and has publicly stated that rates are now going to be rooted to these level for years. Equities will ultimately win out with policy that accommodative.”
Asia’s day: Japan’s Nikkei 225 recovered from earlier losses, gaining 0.5 per cent to 16,938.87. South Korea’s Kospi edged up 0.1 per cent to 1,971.41 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was up 1.1 per cent to 20,199.60. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.3 per cent to 5,166.40 while the Shanghai Composite Index in mainland China finished up 0.2 per cent at 2,810.31. Shares in Southeast Asia were mostly higher.
Oil: Benchmark U.S. crude added 80 cents to $38.65 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract finished 45 cents lower at $37.84 a barrel on Thursday. Brent crude, which is used to price international oils, gained 66 cents at $40.71 a barrel.
Currencies: The dollar strengthened to 113.81 yen from 113.22 yen while the euro fell to $1.1120 from $1.1178.