Later in the day, US GDP and jobless claims data will come into the market focus
Wall Street stocks recovered partially overnight to finish mixed while the benchmark U.S. Treasury yields edged higher for a seventh straight day. The Dow Jones and the S&P 500 gained 0.26% and 0.16%, respectively, while the Nasdaq Composite shed 0.24%. On the data front, U.S. pending home sales rose 8.1% in August, far exceeding expectations of a 0.4% increase.
Asian markets showed a mixed trend on Thursday. Worries about Evergrande default risk eased somehow after the property giant reported plans to settle debt with a Chinese bank. However, the company’s shares fell nearly 5% amid reports that it was likely to miss another payment on a bond. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index fell 0.12% after the data showed that Japan’s industrial output fell for the second straight month in August while retail sales slipped for the first time in six months.
In Europe, equities opened lower today, with the pan-European Stoxx 600 climbing 0.8% in early trade. On the data front, the U.K. economy grew by 5.5% in the second quarter, exceeding a previous estimate of 4.8% growth. Later in the day, US GDP and jobless claims data will come into the market focus.
In currencies, the dollar extended gains to fresh highs on Wednesday, sending EUR/USD below 1.16, the lowest since mid-2020, and GBP/USD toward the 1.34 figure last seen in December 2020. Elevated returns on Treasury yields are the main dollar driver. On Thursday, the greenback is giving some ground while still staying elevated across the board.
Meanwhile, oil prices gained in volatile trading on Wednesday, albeit were off intraday highs seen above the $78 figure. The EIA reported on that U.S. crude inventories rose by 4.6 million barrels for the week ended September 24. Brent crude managed to notch some gains even as crude inventories climbed for the first time in eight weeks while the USD index strengthened to highest level in about a year. Early on Thursday, oil prices retained a bullish bias, challenging the $78.50 region in early European trade.