LONDON (Reuters) – The global stocks rally was back on track on Tuesday, with more support from the Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan helping end a bumpy few days for financial markets.
FILE PHOTO: A man wearing a protective face mask walks past the London Stock Exchange Group building in the City of London financial district, London, Britain, March 9, 2020. REUTERS/Toby Melville
A nearly 5% jump by Japan’s Nikkei ensured the best day for Asian equities since late March and almost 2% rises from London, Paris and Frankfurt got Europe off to a fast start. <0#.INDEXE>
Talk that U.S. firms may be allowed to work with China’s Huawei on new 5G standards eased trade jitters, and a report of a new $1 trillion U.S. infrastructure programme also boosted markets.
“It is a buy-the-dip mentality,” John Hardy, head of FX strategy at Saxo Bank, said after risk-sensitive currencies such as the Australian dollar also made gains overnight.
“But the degree and the speed that things are melting back in FX now is telling… you feel like you can’t really trust these moves.”
That melt saw the dollar firm up at 96.62, having dropped almost 1% from Monday’s high of 97.396. The Aussie was also backsliding, having risen more than 2% off a two-week low in Asian trading.
The euro and yen were both barely budging at $1.1333 and 107.33 yen per dollar. The Bank of Japan had increased its lending packages for cash-strapped firms to $1 trillion from about $700 billion, but had also kept rates steady, sticking to its view that the Japanese economy will gradually recover from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Fed also announced on Monday eagerly-awaited details of its programme to lend funds directly to companies.
The facility, which began purchasing shares of exchange-traded funds in mid-May, is one of the Fed’s recently created tools meant to improve market functioning after the coronavirus.
Benchmark 10-year Treasury yields notes edged up to 0.74% in response, and the spread between two-year and 10-year yields widened to 54 basis points in another sign of improving risk appetite.
German, French, Dutch and other core yields rose in Europe too, and riskier Italian yields fell to their lowest since the end of March.
“In absence of a further surge in new (coronavirus) infections in China or the US, the market hopes about monetary and fiscal tailwinds alongside improving sentiment indicators should prevail,” Commerzbank strategists wrote.
Oil prices also steadied in commodity markets as lingering concerns over fuel demand from the resurgence of new coronavirus infections were cushioned by hopes of further cuts in crude supplies.
U.S. crude was trading up 1.2% at $37.58 a barrel, after falling 1.2%, and Brent crude also rose 1.5% to $40.34 per barrel.
Improving sentiment also pushed up Wall Street futures with e-Minis for the S&P 500 rising 1.6%. U.S. markets had made a late dash to finish higher on Monday.
Additional reporting by Elizabeth Howcroft in London, Editing by Timothy Heritage