US jobs data One of the last big blasts of second-quarter earnings news is expected Thursday as traders watch to see if oil can hold its gains.
Dow Jones closed 0.2% higher at 18,355, with JP Morgan leadding the gains, up by 1.46%. The S&P 500 rose 6 points to 2,163, slightly
above the key 2,160 area.
The NASDAQ ended up by 0.43% to the level of 5159.75.
Tesla Motors reported a second-quarter adjusted loss of $1.06 per share on $1.56 billion in sales. That’s more than double the loss
analysts, on average, were expecting. In a letter to shareholders, Tesla said that it finished the second quarter consistently making
2,000 vehicles per week. For the entire quarter, Tesla produced a record total of 18,345 vehicles, an 18 percent increase over the first
quarter and up 43 percent over the second fiscal quarter of 2015.
U.S. private employers added 179,000 jobs in July, above economists’ expectations, a report by ADP showed on Wednesday. Economists
polled by Reuters are looking for U.S. private payroll employment to have grown by 170,000 jobs in July, down from 265,000 the month
before. Total non-farm employment is expected to have risen by 180,000.
U.S. data Thursday includes weekly jobless claims at 15:30 GMT and factory order at 17:00 GMT, While Friday the market will pay
attention to the non-farm payroll report at 15:30 GMT.
Shares in Asia were broadly higher Thursday on an overnight rebound in oil prices. Japan’s Nikkei reversed early gains amid
uncertainties over monetary easing. Japan’s Nikkei share average erased earlier gains and edged lower on Thursday, pulled down by a
bullish yen and caution before Friday’s U.S. non-farm payrolls. The Nikkei declined 0.4 percent to 16,020.15 after rising to 16,208.05
earlier in the morning session.
Rest of Asian markets traded mostly higher. Australia’s benchmark ASX 200 was up 0.46 percent, with the energy sub-index rallying
some 2 percent following the overnight rebound in oil prices. South Korea’s leading benchmark, Kospi was higher by 0.22 percent.
The Hang Seng index was up 0.58 percent, while Chinese mainland markets traded mixed, with the Shanghai composite lower by 0.19
percent and the Shenzhen composite up 0.36 percent.
European stocks closed mixed on Wednesday after a slew of earnings, with banking stocks rallying. The pan-European STOXX 600 closed roughly flat while U.K.’s FTSE 100 and Spanish IBEX ended down around 0.1 percent. The French CAC 40 closed 0.3 percent lower.
On the gainers side, the German DAX closed roughly 0.2 percent higher and Italian FTSE MIB was up around 0.3 percent.
The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against six major currencies, was up 0.52% to 95.559, recovering from six-week lows hit the previous session.
The yen remained on the front foot against the dollar, with verbal warnings from Japan’s top currency diplomat having little impact.
The dollar, on the defensive this week as the prospects for a near-term U.S. rate hike faded, was down 0.4% at 100.89 yen.
The British Pound fell slightly on Wednesday, erasing some of its sharp gains from the previous session, as traders look ahead to a highly-anticipated Bank of England meeting, where policymakers may lower interest rates for the first time since 2009.
The pair moved between 1.3281 and 1.3372, before closing the U.S. afternoon session at 1.3325, down 0.24% on the day.
Metals and Energy
Oil prices jumped more than 3%, with U.S. crude futures returning to above $40 a barrel, after a larger-than-expected U.S. gasoline draw offset a surprise build in crude stockpiles.
Brent crude settled up $1.30, or 3.11%, at $43.10 a barrel, while U.S. crude settled up $1.32, or 3.34%, at $40.83.
Gold dipped in early trade on Thursday, extending its losses from the previous session on a firmer dollar following stronger-than-expected U.S. employment data.
Spot gold Bullion ended down 0.4% at $1,357.50 on Wednesday. U.S. gold edged down 0.2% at $1,362.30 an ounce.
Gold prices have surged 27% this year, outperforming many other commodities and the S&P 500.
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