BUSINESS US stocks open higher, pushing indexes further into records


US stocks open higher, pushing indexes further into records


22:19, November 01, 2021

Stocks are opening modestly higher on Wall Street Monday, bringing major indexes a bit further past the record highs they set last week. The S&P 500 was up 0.1% in the early going and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.4%. The Nasdaq was barely higher as technology stocks lagged the rest of the market. This week traders will be watching another policy meeting by the Federal Reserve, which is in the process of considering how to wind down its extraordinary support measures for the economy. More companies are reporting their latest quarterly earnings and the government releases its monthly jobs report Friday.

Stocks advanced in Europe and most of Asia on Monday, with Tokyo’s benchmark up 2.6% after the ruling Liberal Democrats won a stronger than expected majority in an election Sunday.

The gains followed further milestones on Wall Street, where the three major indexes set records.

Germany's DAX rose 0.6% to 15,774.76 and in Paris, the CAC 40 added 0.5% to 6,863.04. Britain's FTSE 100 gained 0.4% to 7,268.63. The futures for the Dow industrials and the S&P 500 were 0.2% higher.

On Friday, the S&P 500 rose 0.2%; the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.3% and the Nasdaq closed 0.3% higher.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s coalition kept a comfortable majority in Sunday’s parliamentary election despite losing some seats as his weeks-old government grapples with a coronavirus-battered economy and regional security challenges.

“This removes a key political overhang that has been weighing on market sentiments . . . and drives risk-on moves in the Japanese market," Jun Rong Yeap of IG said in a commentary.

Kishida is expected to draw up a package of government spending and other measures to boost growth. He has backed away from earlier comments suggesting he favors raising the capital gains tax, a move that would largely tax the wealthy. Suggesting that might be one way to address growing inequality in Japan wilted share prices just after he took office.

Shares have since rebounded amid signs Kishida's administration will likely continue the market-supporting policies of his predecessors Shinzo Abe and Yoshihide Suga.

Tokyo's Nikkei 225 index surged 754 points to 29,647.08, while the Kospi in Seoul gained 0.3% to 2,978.94. In Sydney, the S&P/ASX 200 picked up 0.6% to 7,370.80. The Shanghai Composite index edged 0.1% lower, to 3,544,48.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng dropped 0.9% to 25,154.32 as investor concerns over financial risks for property developers added to worries over the economic outlook.

Wall Street logged its best month in nearly a year in October, as investors balanced encouraging company earnings growth against concerns over rising inflation and supply chain disruptions.

A wide range of companies, most recently Apple and Amazon, have flagged challenges due to rising costs or supply chain problems.

Outside of earnings, investors are looking ahead to this week's meeting of the Federal Reserve as the central bank moves closer to trimming bond purchases that have helped keep interest rates low.

Benchmark U.S. crude oil fell 27 cents to $83.30 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It gave up 24 cents to $83.57 per barrel on Friday.

Brent crude, the basis for international pricing, lost 4 cents to $83.68 per barrel.

The U.S. dollar rose to 114.41 Japanese yen from 114.07 yen on Friday. The euro strengthened to $1.1571 from $1.1566.

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