Investors retained their appetite for risk in the latest US trading session, as indices closed with gains ahead of today’s NFP release. The Dow 30 index advanced 48.89 points 17,838.56 (+0.27%), the S&P 500 index landed 5.93 points higher to 2,105.26 (+0.28%) and the Nasdaq rose 19.11 points to 4,971.36 (+0.39%). The S&P 500 VIX, which is considered a gauge of market uncertainty, slid 0.57 points down to 13.63 (-4.01%) to indicate that risk-taking is in play.
Data from the US economy came in slightly better than expected, with the initial jobless claims landing at 267K versus the projected 270K figure. The May NFP report is expected to show 159K in hiring gains, weaker than the previous 160K increase, while average hourly earnings could rise 0.2% versus the previous 0.3% gain.
European equities end mixed after ECB decision
Stock market indices in Europe were mostly lower after the European Central Bank delivered its monetary policy decision. Even though no monetary policy changes were announced, the downbeat tone of the statement and the smaller than expected upgrades to growth and inflation forecasts dampened investor activity in the region.
The German DAX managed to end with a gain of 3.56 points to 10,208.00 (+0.03%), the French CAC 40 was down 9.93 points to 4,466.00 (-0.21%), and the Euro Stoxx 50 index edged 1.76 points down to 3,037.01 (-0.06%). According to ECB Governor Mario Draghi, growth in the second quarter is likely to be slower compared to Q1 while inflation could remain low in the coming months.
Meanwhile, the London FTSE was down 6.32 points to 6,185.61 (-0.10%) as the UK construction PMI showed a steeper than expected decline from 52.0 to 51.2 instead of landing at 51.9. The UK services PMI is up for release today and a rise from 52.3 to 52.5 is eyed, indicating a stronger pace of industry expansion. Nonetheless, Brexit updates could have a stronger impact on UK stock market action.
OPEC meeting fails to produce output agreement
Crude oil tumbled after the OPEC meeting failed to produce an agreement to cap output levels. However, the energy ministers appeared pleased with the meeting turnout as they committed to work together to keep the market stable.
The commodity price has recovered in the Asian trading session, with traders now holding out for bigger market catalysts later in the day or actual announcements from OPEC officials. The Nikkei is up 45.47 points to 16,608.02 (+0.27%), the China A50 index is up 11.87 points to 9,608.84 (+0.12%), and the S&P ASX 200 index is up 34.81 points to 5,313.70 (+0.66%).
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