Morning Report

Thursday, 4 June 2020

  • Asia stocks edge higher as optimism remains over economic recovery from coronavirus pandemic
  • U.S. dollar’s shine fading, but risk high of rush to safe havens
  • Oil prices fall on concerns supply to rise as producers wrangle on cuts

Stocks in Asia nudged higher in Thursday morning trade as optimism over the economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic continued to keep investor sentiment afloat.

Mainland Chinese stocks were mostly higher early trade, with the Shenzhen component adding 0.35% while the Shenzhen composite was up 0.295%. In Japan, both the Nikkei 225 and Topix indexes added 0.25% each. South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.89% in morning trade, adding to its nearly 3% Wednesday surge. Meanwhile, shares in Australia also rose, with the S&P/ASX 200 up 0.65%. 

Overnight stateside, the Dow Jones Industrial Average surged 527.24 points to close at 26,29.89 while the S&P 500 gained 1.4% to end its trading day at 3,122.87. The Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.8% to 9,682.91. 

A fading of the U.S. dollar’s allure will continue as global funding strains ease, but a majority of analysts polled by Reuters said there was a high risk that the U.S.-China trade standoff will renew safe-haven bets in the next six months.

The euro , which rose above $1.12 for the first time in 11 weeks on Wednesday, was on track for a seven-day winning streak against the dollar – its longest since December 2013.

Oil prices fell on Thursday, reversing gains in the previous session, on concerns that supply will rise if major producers are unable to agree to extend the depth of output cuts that have supported recent gains.

Brent crude  futures fell 1%, or 41 cents, to $39.38 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude  futures fell 1.6%, or 61 cents, to $36.68 a barrel.

Source : Reuters

Moody’s cuts India’s rating

Moody’s Investors Service downgraded India’s credit rating to a notch above junk on Monday, citing a prolonged period of slow growth in Asia’s third-largest economy, rising debt and persistent stress in parts of the financial system.

It said the cut to Baa3 from Baa2 was not driven directly by the impact of the coronavirus but that the pandemic had amplified vulnerabilities in India’s credit profile that were present and building prior to the shock.

Moody’s maintained a negative outlook for the new sovereign rating, citing worsening government finances as the coronavirus continues to hurt the economy.

India’s economy grew 3.1% in January-March, its slowest quarterly pace in at least eight years, and Moody’s expects a contraction of 4% in the current fiscal year, which runs until March 2021, due to the strict lockdown imposed in April and May.

The change brings Moody’s rating into line with Fitch and Standard and Poor’s, both of which rate India BBB-, although they assign stable rather than negative outlooks.