NZ Equity Weekly

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Global Markets Edge Higher

Company results helped lead indices in the UK and US higher with most major markets heading for gains on Thursday as investors weighed minutes from the Fed’s latest meeting amid mixed economic data.

US stocks gain as company results positively surprise

US stocks advanced as companies posted results with indices topping records. At the time of writing the S&P 500 had gained +0.3% while the Dow Jones Industrial Average had added less than +0.1%.

Best Buy and rallied +5.2% and +4.4% respectively as earnings came in higher than expected. Transocean climbed +3.6% after reaching a settlement with BP (+1.3%) regarding the 2010 Gulf of Mexico disaster. Omnicare rose +1.7% on reports CVS (+3.5%) will acquire the company. Qualcomm gained +1.4% after it began its US$5bn share buyback. NetApp sank -11.9% after sales guidance missed expectations.

European shares rally on company news 

The Stoxx Europe 600 added +0.4% as weaker than expected US economic data fuelled bets the Fed will hold off raising interest rates. Booker Group surged +11.8% after reporting it plans to buy the Londis and Budgens businesses from Musgrave Group. Raiffeisen Bank International slipped -2.8% as quarterly profit declined by nearly -50%.

The UK’s FTSE 100 edged up +0.1%, posting its longest winning streak in the last two months. Marks & Spencer rose +1.7% as data showed an increase in UK retail sales. Aberdeen Asset Management added +2.2% to lead gains on the index. EasyJet and International Consolidated Airlines lost -2.4% and -2.3% respectively as oil prices continued to rise.

Japanese shares advance on weaker yen

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index gained +0.2% as investors weighed Fed minutes and weak Chinese data buoyed stimulus bets. Anhui Conch Cement rose +1.3%. Goldin Financial and Goldin Properties plummeted -43.3% and -40.9% respectively with no immediate explanation.

Japan’s Topix rose +0.6% to a seven year high as the yen lost against the greenback following minutes from the Fed’s latest meeting. Exporters gained with Mazda adding +1.7%. Panasonic rallied +2.3% on a rating upgrade. MS&AD Insurance jumped +5.4% as the company’s forecasts topped estimates. Ibiden slipped -2.9% on the back of a rating downgrade.

ASX 200 up

The ASX 200 closed up +0.9%, snapping its losing streak.

Crude up, gold down

WTI crude rallied +2.5% to US$59.93 while gold fell -0.4% to US$1,204.79.



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