Asian stocks catch up with global equity rally, but oil slips – .

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Asian stocks catch up with global equity rally, but oil slips – .


HONG KONG, Dec. 8 (Reuters) – Asian stocks extended their gains on Wednesday, continuing a rally of global relief as markets found positive news in early reports on the potential impact of the Omicron variant, although Oil price increases have started to falter.

“The markets are very sensitive to any new small thing related to Omicron, and the absence of bad news is viewed very positively by the stock markets, although – and I’m no scientist – it seems too early to report. an agreement, ”he added. said Stefan Hofer, chief investment strategist for LGT private bank in Asia-Pacific

“With each new variant, we go through a period of waiting for a signal from the scientific community, which is difficult for the markets, but that’s what we had yesterday. “

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The largest MSCI Asia-Pacific stock index outside of Japan (.MIAPJ0000PUS) rose 0.3% and the Japan Nikkei (.N225) rose 1%. US S&P 500 futures rose 0.25%.

British drugmaker GSK (GSK.L) said on Tuesday that its antibody-based COVID-19 therapy with its US partner Vir Biotechnology was effective against all mutations in the novel variant of the coronavirus Omicron. Read more

A South African study also suggested on Tuesday that booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccine produced by Pfizer Inc (PFE.N) and its partner BioNTech could help fend off Omicron infection, although the study showed that the new strain may partially escape protection against two doses of vaccine. Read more

The reports helped the MSCI All Country World Index (.MIWD00000PUS) to close 2.1% higher on Tuesday, in its biggest percentage gain since November 2020. Oil also rose more than 3%.

Markets are also focused on the US CPI data due on Friday, with a high impression likely to point policymakers towards accelerating the cut to the Federal Reserve’s massive bond buying program that has put a floor below stock prices since the start of the pandemic.

“The rally of relief may be short lived if US data on Friday shows high inflation seems persistent or lingering,” – choose a word that is not transient, “said Hofer.

Last week, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said maybe it was time to stop viewing inflation as transient and hinted that the Fed could step up its reduction.

This should support the dollar, especially against other currencies with more accommodating central banks.

The greenback was little changed on Wednesday against a basket of six major peers, although the Australian dollar extended its overnight gains to $ 0.7122, its highest in a week, after falling to a 13-month low due to concerns over Omicron and a relatively accommodating powerhouse. FRX bank

Better news and rising commodity prices helped the Aussie, while the rebound in oil prices helped the Canadian dollar appreciate in a Bank of Canada policy meeting later Wednesday.

The 29 economists polled by Reuters expect the Bank of Canada to keep rates unchanged at 0.25% at the meeting. Read more

The benchmark 10-year US Treasury yield edged down on Wednesday, but after two days of gains following better news about Omicron.

It was last at 1.4614%, well above the recent Friday low of 1.335% when Omicron worries first struck, but also well below its recent high before Omicron ended. November by 1.693%.

The two-year yield, which rises with higher interest rate expectations, was 0.6892% just below its recent high.

US crude fell 0.45% to $ 71.79 per barrel. Brent crude fell 0.44% to $ 75.11 a barrel.

Spot gold rose 0.3% to $ 1,789 an ounce, in its recent range, and its rival inflation hedge, bitcoin was also calm after an exciting weekend, barely changed to $ 50,600.

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Reporting by Alun John, editing by Richard Pullin

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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