President Donald Trump trailing Democratic rival Joe Biden in national polls
Wall Street stocks closed higher on Monday as investors shrugged off the coronavirus theme and focused on unexpectedly strong economic data out of the US. Markit Manufacturing PMI for the US improved to 53.4 in October from 53.2 in September, exceeding the flash estimate and the market expectation of 53.3. As a result, the benchmark S&P 500 index rose 1.2%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.6%, and the Nasdaq Composite picked up 0.4%.
Asian equities followed suit and climbed across the board on Tuesday as investors watched for U.S. election results, hoping a win by Joe Biden might lead to more economic stimulus. In Australia, the Reserve Bank of Australia cut its key interest rate by 0.15% to a record low 0.1%, in line with expectations. Australia’s S&P-ASX 200 rose 2.2%, the Shanghai Composite Index in China gained 1.4%, the Hang Seng in Hong Kong added nearly 2%. Japanese markets were closed for a holiday.
In Europe, equities extended their recovery on Tuesday, as attention turned to the U.S. presidential election, with Republican President Donald Trump trailing Democratic rival Joe Biden in national polls. After hitting five-month lows last week, the pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.7% in early trading. As for individual stocks, French bank BNP Paribas rallied 5% 4.6% as the bank revealed strong quarterly results.
Meanwhile, the USD index is relatively steady, slightly off one-month highs registered on Monday. EURUSD extends the correction from the 1.1620 area but is still below the 1.17 handle, suggesting the upside potential is limited at this stage despite the prevailing risk-on tone. On the positive side, the euro has exceeded the 100-DMA in recent trading but is yet to confirm the latest recovery on a daily closing basis. In the short-term, volatility could pick up amid the looming US election that will set a further tone for USD pairs.