European share markets hit a near 9-month high on Monday. Investor optimism over the global economy and signs that inflation is coming under control boosted shares. Real estate stocks led gains, up 2.1%. The continent-wide FTSEurofirst 300 index lifted 0.4%. And the UK FTSE 100 index was up 0.2%, inching closer to record highs. Asia-focussed financial stocks HSBC and Prudential rose 0.8% and 2.5%, respectively, on hopes that China’s reopening from Covid lockdowns will boost the global economy.

US share markets were closed on Monday for the Martin Luther King Jr. Day public holiday. Last Friday, the Dow Jones index rose 113 points or 0.3%. The S&P 500 index gained 0.4%. And the Nasdaq index added 78 points or 0.7%.

The US government bond market was shut for a public holiday on Monday. Last Friday, US 10-year Treasury yields rose by 5 points to near 3.50%. And US 2-year yields rose by 9 points to near 4.22%.

Major currencies were weaker against the US dollar in European and North American trade. The Euro fell from highs near US$1.0860 to lows near US$1.0801 and was near US$1.0820 in afternoon North American trade. The Aussie dollar eased from highs near US69.96 cents to lows near US69.41 cents and was near US69.55 cents in afternoon North American trade. And the Japanese yen weakened from near 127.59 yen per US dollar to around JPY128.81 and was near JPY128.55 in afternoon North American trade.

Global oil prices fell for the first time in eight sessions on Monday. Traders took stock of the outlook for worldwide crude demand, with China’s reopening delivering a lift, while other parts of the global economy slow. The Brent crude oil price slid US82 cents or 1% to US$84.46 a barrel. And the US Nymex crude oil price shed US$1.01 or 1.3% to US$78.85 a barrel in after-hours trade.


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Base metal prices were mixed in London trade on Monday. Copper fell 0.9% as investor focus shifted back to weakening demand in top consumer China, while negative sentiment was reinforced by a firmer US dollar. But aluminium hit a 7-month high, up 1.1%, after Goldman Sachs raised its price forecasts for the metal on stronger demand in Europe and China. US futures markets were closed on Monday. US copper futures rose 0.5% and US aluminium futures lifted 2% on Friday.

The gold futures price fell US$3.40 an ounce or 0.2% to US$1,918.30 an ounce in after-hours trade on Monday. The spot gold price was trading near US$1,916 in afternoon North American trade.

Iron ore futures tumbled 2.5% to US$120.51 a tonne in Singapore on Monday, after dropping as much as 5.4% earlier. Chinese authorities warned steel-making companies against publishing false market information and pledged to maintain tight supervision of pricing following a recent price surge. The iron ore China futures price closed at US$122.33 a tonne on Friday.

Ahead: In Australia, consumer confidence readings and overseas arrivals/departures data are released. Rio Tinto is
expected to release quarterly production figures.

In China, economic growth (GDP) data is scheduled with monthly production, retail sales and investment figures.

In the US, the Empire State manufacturing index is released.

New York Fed President John Williams speaks. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and United Airlines are scheduled to release earnings results.

Originally published by CommSec