OPENING CALL: The Australian share market is expected to open lower. The SPI200 futures contract expected to open down 22 points.
St. Louis Fed President James Bullard, one of the strongest advocates of lowering interest rates in 2019 is content to keep them steady for now.
Goldman Sachs is in talks with the U.S. government to pay a multibillion-dollar fine, admit guilt and agree to continuing oversight of its compliance procedures in order to resolve a criminal investigation into its role in a Malaysian corruption scandal.
Each Market in Focus
Australian financial and energy companies kept pressure on a local stock market that faltered following stronger-than-expected monthly jobs numbers.
The S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.3% to settle at 6833.1. That pared the index’s advance so far this week to 1.4%.
National Australia Bank lost 1.1% to lead losses for the four biggest banks, and insurers IAG and Medibank each dropped more than 2.0%. Only the industrials, utilities and property sectors managed modest gains for the day, while Village Roadshow rallied 22% after receiving a private-equity takeover offer.
U.S. stocks rose intraday, putting major indexes on track to notch a trio of record closes and resuming a year-end rally.
Consumer staples and technology stocks led major indexes higher after companies in those sectors offered further reassurances to investors that economic growth remains solid.
That helped the S&P 500 add 0.4% in recent trading, putting the broad index on pace to notch a fresh record.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq Composite were also on track to close at new highs. The Dow was up 115 points, or 0.4%, to 28355, while the Nasdaq Composite added 0.6%.
Gold futures marked their highest settlement in more than two weeks in the wake of President Donald Trump’s impeachment by the U.S. House of Representatives.
Gold for February delivery on Comex climbed by $5.70, or 0.4%, to settle at $1,484.40 an ounce.
Oil futures settled higher, with U.S. prices posting their highest finish since mid-September a day after data revealed a weekly fall in domestic crude supplies.
January West Texas Intermediate oil rose 29 cents, or 0.5%, to end at $61.22 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange
The dollar rose against the British pound after disappointing retail sales data in the U.K., while the euro gained. The dollar has declined recently against a backdrop of improved sentiment about global trade and as the Fed has signaled that it is unlikely to raise rates, with some investors speculating that the next move could be a cut, perhaps as soon as next year.
European stocks traded mostly higher as investors shrugged off the impeachment of U.S. President Donald Trump.
The Stoxx Europe 600 and the CAC-40 both gained 0.2% and the FTSE 100 ticked up 0.4%, as the pound weakened 0.5% against the euro and 0.4% versus the dollar, though the DAX fell 0.08%.
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