Stock market bullish trend continues, pound faces Brexit test By Reuters

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© Reuters. A man wearing a face mask walks past a stock quote board outside a brokerage house, amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in Tokyo

Par Stanley White

TOKYO (Reuters) – Asian stocks hit an all-time high and US equity futures gained on Wednesday as investors followed positive news on COVID-19 vaccines and ongoing efforts to launch more stimulus measures budgetary.

The largest MSCI index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside of Japan rose 0.65%. At one point, the index hit 647.78, an all-time high.

MSCI’s stock gauge across the world also hit an all-time high.

Australian stocks gained 0.61%. rose 1.27% to approach a 29 1/2 year high. Sentiment was strengthened after Japanese data indicated a rebound in capital spending.

South Korean stocks also jumped 1.6% to trade near a record high. Chinese stocks weathered the trend and fell 0.68% on profit taking.

The Germans rose 0.45%, the Germans by 0.37% and the futures contracts in London by 0.48%.

U.S. e-mini stock futures rose 0.23% after Wall Street shares hit a new high on Tuesday, boosted by positive vaccine news and apparent progress in trading. American stimulus.

The British pound hardly changed before the landmark trade deal talks between Britain and the European Union.

“While hope is still alive that a new stimulus package for the United States will be agreed soon, it seems less likely that a Brexit deal will be reached with negotiators on both sides acknowledging that a deal could not be concluded, ”ANZ Bank analysts wrote in a research note.

“The next 24 hours will be critical and are likely to cause market volatility depending on what is agreed or not. ”

On Tuesday, the S&P 500 was up 0.35%, the S&P 500 0.28% and the addition 0.5%.

U.S. policymakers have continued to negotiate additional stimulus measures to help offset the economic impact of the pandemic while pursuing an interim government funding bill.

Leaders on both sides remain adamant that a deal needs to be struck, but are still working on sticking points, including helping state and local governments and corporate liability protections.

The steady march of positive news about COVID-19 vaccines has helped boost investor morale.

Britain on Tuesday became the first Western country to launch a major vaccination campaign, and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE 🙂 said it could get results of late-stage trials for a single-dose vaccine in January, more sooner than expected.

Meanwhile, Pfizer Inc (NYSE 🙂 broke another hurdle when the U.S. health regulator released documents not reporting any new safety or efficacy issues.

But the looming prospect of a ‘no deal’ Brexit weighed on sentiment for the pound sterling, which last traded at $ 1.3379 and 90.68 pence to the euro.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will meet Ursula von der Leyen, President of the EU’s Executive Commission, for a dinner in Brussels on Wednesday to try to fill the loopholes their negotiators have been grappling with for months.

Against a basket of currencies, the dollar sat at 90,802, which is just above a two-and-a-half-year low it hit on Friday as vaccine optimism drew sellers to discovered.

Highlighting the weakness of the dollar, the offshore Chinese yuan strengthened beyond 6.5000 to reach the highest level in more than two years. Trade was also close to its highest level in more than two years.

The benchmark index edged up to 0.9394% on Wednesday. Some dealers say expectations of increased tax spending could drive yields higher in the future.

futures fell 0.27% to $ 48.71 per barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate futures fell 0.24% to $ 45.49 on higher inventories. [O/R]

fell from a two-week high to $ 1,858.26 an ounce as the start of vaccine therapy reduced safe-haven demand for the precious metal.

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