Stocks rise as bullish sentiment continues

·4-min read
Stock prices moved higher on Wall Street, and sentiment was even more positive in Europe (AFP/Angela Weiss)

World stock markets rose on Monday as positive economic data and anticipation or more to come later this week fuelled bullish sentiment.

"The stock markets started the new month on the front foot with European indices and US futures rising ahead of the open on Wall Street and a big week for central banks and data," said ThinkMarkets analyst Fawad Razaqzada.

"It still seems to be a temperate, if not hot, climate for stocks in what is often a seasonally warm period," said Patrick J. O'Hare of Briefing.com.

Stock prices were modestly higher on Wall Street, and sentiment was even more positive in Europe, where London's FTSE and Frankfurt's DAX ended the session 0.7 percent and 0.8 percent higher respectively and Paris' CAC index gained 0.9 percent.

Such performances were "not bad, considering central banks around the world are having a small panic about inflation and planning multiple rate hikes over the next year or so," said OANDA analyst Craig Erlam.

"In the past, the idea of this has sent shockwaves through the markets and that was when economies were in a far healthier position."

In Asia, the markets had similarly ended the day in positive territory, with Tokyo leading the way as a win for Japan's ruling party in a weekend general election raised hopes it will push ahead with a fresh stimulus.

The yen neared a four-year low against the dollar with Japan seemingly not on course to tighten monetary policy in the short term, in contrast to the Federal Reserve which this week could announce plans to begin tapering its pandemic-fuelled stimulus support.

Tokyo's main stocks index closed 2.6 percent higher after Prime Minister Fumio Kishida won a strong majority in the poll, giving him the freedom to push through a big spending programme to kick-start the stuttering economy.

Investors were looking ahead to the US Federal Reserve, which this week is expected to unveil a timetable for tapering its vast bond-buying stimulus programme, analysts said.

A statement by Fed chief Jerome Powell following the monetary policy meeting will be closely followed for an idea about when the US central bank will start hiking interest rates.

News that inflation had hit a 30-year high in the United States and a 13-year peak in the eurozone added to long-running concerns that price rises are in danger of running out of control, and piled more pressure on central banks to tighten monetary policy.

"Given (the beginning of tapering) is well expected, more interest is likely to be in Chair Powell's press conference and whether this hints the Fed is becoming less comfortable with the inflation picture and whether they are starting to see the case for multiple hikes in 2022 as the market is pricing," said National Australia Bank's Rodrigo Catril.

The Bank of England is tipped to lift rates this week, following in the footsteps of other financial authorities in South Korea, New Zealand and Singapore, among others.

Hong Kong and Shanghai markets fell, however, after China released data showing factory activity contracted more than expected in October owing to a supply crunch, rising input costs and new lockdowns to fight another Covid outbreak.

The reading will add further pressure on Beijing to provide more support for the world's number two economy, but authorities have to tread a fine line as they battle to contain inflation.

- Key figures around 1645 GMT -

New York - Dow: UP 0.3 percent at 35,913.88 points

London - FTSE 100: UP 0.7 percent at 7,288.62 (close)

Frankfurt - DAX: UP 0.8 percent at 15,806.29 (close)

Paris - CAC 40: UP 0.9 percent at 6,893.29 (close)

EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.7 percent at 4,280.47

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 2.6 percent at 29,647.08 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng Index: DOWN 0.9 percent at 25,154.32 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.1 percent at 3,544.48 (close)

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.1592 from $1.1556 at 2030 GMT on Friday

Euro/pound: UP at 84.83 pence from 84.44 pence

Pound/dollar: DOWN at $1.3665 from $1.3685

Dollar/yen: UP at 114.17 from 114.03 yen

Brent North Sea crude: UP 1.1 percent at $84.64 per barrel

West Texas Intermediate: UP 0.7 percent at $84.14

burs-spm/bp

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting