GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian shares rise on U.S. stimulus fix, Nikkei hits 30-year high

GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian shares rise on U.S. stimulus fix, Nikkei hits 30-year high

Reuters  | Dec 29, 2020 10:10

GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian shares rise on U.S. stimulus fix, Nikkei hits 30-year high

* Asian stock markets:
* U.S. stimulus boosts risk appetite
* Japan stocks scale 29-year peak
* Oil futures recover on hope for higher demand

By Stanley White and Koh Gui Qing
TOKYO/NEW YORK, Dec 29 (Reuters) - Asian shares jumped on
Tuesday, with Japanese stocks hitting a 30-year high, as hopes
that a long-awaited U.S. pandemic relief package would be
expanded and a Brexit trade deal supported investor risk
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan
.MIAPJ0000PUS rose 0.46%. Australian stocks .AXJO rose
0.55%. Japan's Nikkei .N225 leapt 1.63% to its highest since
August 1990, while shares in China .CSI300 rose 0.1%.
Futures for the S&P 500 ESc1 added 0.32%.
The dollar nursed losses against major currencies and
Treasury yields rose after U.S. President Donald Trump's
approval of a stimulus package related to the coronavirus
outbreak increased risk appetite.
The positive mood also helped oil futures rise during Asian
trading in hopes for an acceleration in economic activity.
The U.S. House of Representatives had voted earlier to
increase stimulus payments to qualified Americans to $2,000 from
$600, sending the measure on to the Senate for a vote.
While it is not clear how the measure will fare in the
Senate, President Donald Trump's signing on Sunday of a $2.3
trillion pandemic bill, which included the $600 payments, had
sent shares on Wall Street to record highs overnight as it
increased optimism about an economic recovery. .N
"With the Brexit ... and the U.S. stimulus deal now in the
rear-view mirror, there is a sense of relief that we have
avoided the respective worst-case scenarios," said Stephen
Innes, chief global market strategist at Axi, a broker.
Firmer demand for riskier assets kept the U.S. dollar, which
is often seen as a "safe-haven" asset, on the back foot. It was
down 0.02% against a basket of major currencies.
Shorting the dollar has been a popular trade recently and
calculations by Reuters based on data released by the Commodity
Futures Trading Commission on Monday suggested this could
endure. Short positions on the dollar swelled in the week ended
Dec. 21 to $26.6 billion, the highest in three months.
The dollar index =USD against a basket of six major
currencies stood at 90.241, not far from the lowest in more than
two years.
Sterling GBP=D3 edged up to $1.3483 following the
confirmation last week of a trade UK-EU trade deal that was
widely expected.
A sluggish dollar bolstered gold prices XAU= , which rose
0.37% to $1,878.06 an ounce. GOL/
Oil prices recovered a touch after falling overnight on
concerns that new travel restrictions on the back of the
COVID-19 pandemic would weaken fuel demand, and as the prospect
of increased supply dragged on prices. O/R
Brent crude LCOc1 rose 0.69% to $51.21 per barrel. U.S.
crude CLc1 was up 0.71% at $47.96 a barrel.
More U.S. fiscal stimulus has also eased concerns about the
threat posed by new variants of the coronavirus identified in
Britain and South Africa.
The yield on benchmark 10-year Treasury notes US10YT=RR
rose to 0.9414%, but the two-year US2YT=RR eased to 0.1270%.

Global assets
Global currencies vs. dollar
Emerging markets
MSCI All Country Wolrd Index Market Cap

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