GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian stocks near 4-month highs on vaccine hopes, eyes on U.S. payrolls

GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian stocks near 4-month highs on vaccine hopes, eyes on U.S. payrolls

Reuters  | Jul 02, 2020 14:40

GLOBAL MARKETS-Asian stocks near 4-month highs on vaccine hopes, eyes on U.S. payrolls

* MSCI ex-Japan rises, all major Asian indexes in black
* Shanghai copper at 6-month highs on supply fears
* Investor focus on U.S. employment data due later in the
* Currencies tread water

By Swati Pandey and Imani Moise
SYDNEY/NEW YORK, July 2 (Reuters) - Asian stocks hovered
near four-month highs on Thursday on hopes of a vaccine for
COVID-19 while copper prices jumped to a more than six-month
peak on a better global outlook and supply fears in top producer
All eyes are on U.S. employment data, due later in the day,
which are expected offer further cues into how the world's
largest economy is coping with a rise in coronavirus cases in
several states.
In a sign the positive sentiment will extend elsewhere,
E-minis for S&P500 ESc1 rose 0.3% while futures for Euro Stoxx
50 STXEc1 rose 0.8% and those for Germany's DAX FDXc1
climbed 0.8%. London's FTSE futures FFIc1 added 0.6%.
Risk sentiment was whetted by a COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer
PFE.N and Germany's BioNTech BNTX.O , which was found to be
well tolerated in early-stage human trials. .N
A vaccine for COVID-19, which has killed more than half a
million people globally and shut down the world economy, has
been long anticipated.
"Based on a vaccine trial containing 45 people, including
placebos, the V-shaped recovery gnomes, are once again, reaching
for the sky," said Jeffrey Halley, Senior Market Analyst, Asia
Pacific at OANDA.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia Pacific shares outside of
Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS rose 1.5% to near levels seen in early
All major Asian indexes were upbeat with Japan's Nikkei
.N225 rising 0.1%, China's blue-chip index .CSI300 adding
1.7% while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index .HSI climbed 1.8%.
U.S. employment figures will help indicate whether the
world's largest economy can sustain its fragile recovery as new
COVID-19 cases accelerate in several southern states.
Economists polled by Reuters expect private employers to
show 2.9 new million new jobs June, which would follow a
surprise increase in May. Casting some doubt over that
projection, however, was a smaller-than-expected increase in
jobs seen in the ADP report on Wednesday. "A better-than-expected outcome could go some way to
settling the near-term debate that the U.S. labor market will
heal relatively quickly and justify new highs in U.S. equities,"
said Stephen Innes, strategist at AxiCorp.
Wall Street ended Wednesday higher after key economic
indicators showed a rebound in Chinese manufacturing activity as
it recovers from the pandemic while sharp declines in European
factory activity eased. Equity investors shrugged off concerns about Hong Kong where
police arrested more than 300 people protesting sweeping new
laws introduced by China to snuff out dissent.
Those developments have raised concerns about China's
already strained relations with its major western trading
partners, particularly the United
States. In commodities, the most-traded August copper contract on
the Shanghai Futures Exchange SCFcv1 touched 49,570 yuan
($7,016.28) a tonne, its highest since Dec. 30, 2019.
Manufacturing activity rebounded in the United States in
June, while the factory sector in Germany, Europe's largest
economy, contracted at a slower pace and top copper consumer
China posted better-than-expected manufacturing data.
Meanwhile in Chile, where the number of COVID-19 cases have
been climbing, miner BHP BHP.AX said it would begin to slow
production at its small Cerro Colorado copper mine in the
Elsewhere, oil prices climbed and gold eased while the
dollar was steady as encouraging macro data prompted investors
to take on more risk. O/R GOL/
Brent crude LCOc1 climbed 17 cents to $42.20 a barrel.
U.S. crude CLc1 rose 14 cents to $39.96 a barrel. U.S. gold
futures GCcv1 were 0.21% lower, at $1,776.20.
The safe haven greenback was unchanged against the Japanese
yen at 107.45. The euro was a shade higher at $1.1267 while
sterling GBP= was slightly firmer at $1.2497.
The risk sensitive Australian and New Zealand dollar
AUD=D3 NZD=D3 were 0.2% and 0.4% stronger respectively.
That left the dollar index =USD at 97.044.

Global assets
Global currencies vs. dollar
Emerging markets
MSCI All Country Wolrd Index Market Cap
(Editing by Sam Holmes and Lincoln Feast.)

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