In US economic data, existing home sales fell by 3.4% in May to a 5.41 million annual rate (survey: 5.4m). The Chicago Federal Reserve national activity index fell from 0.40 to 0.01 in May (survey: 0.32).

European sharemarkets rose for a third straight day on Tuesday. Miners rose 1.3% and oil & gas stocks rose by 1.1%. British airline, easyJet, fell by 6.3% as its Spain-based cabin crew plan to go on strike for nine days to demand higher pay. The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose by 0.4%. The German Dax index lifted 0.2% and the UK FTSE index rose by 0.4%. In London trade, shares of Rio Tinto rose by 2.4% and BHP rose by 1.4%.

US sharemarkets were firmer on Tuesday. So-called mega cap growth and energy companies drove gains on bargain hunting. Shares in Apple rose 3.3% with Microsoft up 2.5% and shares in Tesla up 9.4%. In company news, shares in Kellogg rose 2.0% after the breakfast cereal maker said it was splitting into three companies. The Dow Jones index rose by 641 points or 2.2%. The S&P 500 index rose by 2.5% and the Nasdaq index lifted by 271 points or 2.5%.

US long-term treasuries fell on Tuesday (yields higher) ahead of testimony from the US Federal Reserve chair. US 10-year yields rose by 6 points to near 3.30%. And US 2-year yields rose by 3 points to near 3.19%.

Major currencies were mixed against the US dollar in European and US trade. The Euro held between US$1.0505 and highs near US$1.0580 and was near US$1.0530 at the US close. The Aussie dollar held between near US69.30 cents and US69.95 cents and was near US69.70 cents at the US close. And the Japanese yen held between 134.90 yen per US dollar and JPY136.63 and was near the weakest levels at the US close.

Global oil prices rose by as much as 1% on Tuesday. Traders attribute the gains to continued tight global supplies and increased summer fuel demand in the US and Europe. Supporting prices were predictions from Exxon Mobil Corp Chief Executive Darren Woods that fairly tight oil markets would extend for 3-5 years. The US President has asked the chief executives of six oil companies to a meeting on Thursday to discuss ways to reduce high energy prices. The Brent crude price rose by US52 cents or 0.5% to US$114.65 a barrel. And the US Nymex crude price rose by US$1.09 or 1.0% to US$110.65 a barrel.

Base metal prices rose by as much as 3% on Tuesday with zinc up the most. But lead bucked the trend, down by 0.1%.

The gold futures price fell by US$1.80 or 0.1% to US$1,838.80 an ounce. Spot gold was trading near US$1,833 an ounce at the US close. The iron ore futures price fell by US$2.45 or 1.9% to US$128.93 a tonne.

Ahead: In Australia, skilled job vacancies data is scheduled with the Westpac leading index. In the US, weekly MBA mortgage applications and Redbook chain store sales data are both due. US Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell will deliver the semi-annual monetary policy testimony before the Senate Banking Committee.

Originally published by CommSec