|Page (1) of 1 - 09/07/11||email article||print page|
World markets rise as gloom over Europe debts and US jobs data dissipates
BANGKOK (AP) ' World stock markets rebounded Wednesday as investors looked past bleak U.S. jobs data and Europe's debt crisis to scoop up bargains following a steep sell-off.
Oil prices rose above $87 per barrel. The dollar fell against the euro and the yen.
European shares jumped in early trading, boosted by a German court decision to back the country's involvement in bailouts for troubled European countries.
Britain's FTSE 100 rose 1.8 percent to 5,250.26. Germany's DAX added 2.5 percent to 5,316.93 and France's CAC-40 climbed 2.2 percent to 3,029.70.
Wall Street appeared set for a higher opening, too, with Dow Jones industrial futures rising 0.9 percent to 11,229 and S&P 500 futures gaining 1.1 percent at 1,176.70.
The recovery in equities began early in Asia. Japan's Nikkei 225 index, which on Tuesday fell to its lowest level since April 2009, advanced 2 percent to 8,763.41. Mazda Motor Corp. jumped 3.4 percent and Sony Corp. gained 3.2 percent. Toyota Motor Corp. rose 2.9 percent.
Markets received further good news when the Australian government said the economy expanded 1.2 percent in the quarter through June, rebounding from a 0.9 percent contraction in the previous three months. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 zoomed higher by 2.7 percent at 4,183.40.
South Korea's Kospi clawed back the prior day's losses to surge 3.8 percent to 1,833.46, with blue chip high-tech stocks among those leading the way. Hynix Semiconductor, the world's second-largest memory chip maker, soared 14.7 percent. LG Electronics Inc., which ranks No. 2 globally in flat screen televisions, vaulted 9.1 percent.
Peter Lai, director of DBS Vickers in Hong Kong, said investors were bargain-hunting for deals in commodities, the retail sector and industries favored by the Chinese government, like infrastructure.
Retailing shares in Asia also are attractive, Lai said, because governments in the region have been trying to persuade their traditionally thrifty populations to spend rather than save. GOME Electrical Appliance Holdings, China's largest appliances retailer, jumped 4.7 percent.
"Asians traditionally are big savers. This is why Asian countries have been encouraging people to convert part of their saving power into spending power," he said.
Gold prices, meanwhile, backed off recent all-time highs, causing gold shares to decline. Newcrest Mining Ltd., Australia's top gold miner, lost 0.6 percent.
Mainland Chinese shares gained, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index up 1.8 percent to 2,516.09. The smaller Shenzhen Composite Index advanced 2.4 percent to 1,111.23. Shares chemical industry, securities, cement and travel-related companies advanced while shares in gold weakened.
A wave of negative sentiment slammed global stock markets last Friday, when a government report said the U.S. economy failed to add any new jobs in August. It was the worst reading on jobs since September 2010.
But signs of growth in the U.S. service sector helped tame concerns about another U.S. recession. The Institute for Supply Management said Tuesday that the service sector grew more than analysts had expected in August.
Growth in that part of the economy, which employs nearly 90 percent of America's work force, eased in the three previous months.
"The better than expected reading for the August US non-manufacturing ISM index helped to provide some relief to risk assets but there is still likely to plenty of nervousness in the days ahead, with any improvement in risk appetite likely to prove fragile," Credit Agricole CIB said in a research note.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.9 percent to 11,139.30. The Standard and Poor's 500 index dropped 0.7 percent to 1,165.24. The Nasdaq composite fell 0.2 percent to 2,473.83.
Separately on Tuesday, the Swiss franc dropped sharply after the country's central bank pegged it against the euro in an attempt to rein in the export-sapping appreciation of the currency.
The franc has been hugely in demand in recent weeks due to its widely perceived status as a safe haven during times of market volatility.
The dollar fell to 77.13 yen from 77.67 yen in late trading Tuesday in New York.
The euro rose to $1.4100 from $1.3991.
In commodities trading, benchmark oil for October delivery rose $1.26 to $87.26 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 43 cents to end at $86.02 Tuesday on the Nymex.
In London, Brent crude for October delivery rose 97 cents to $113.86.
AP researcher Fu Ting contributed from Shanghai.