US stocks rise as oil advances, dollar weakens

(iStock)
(iStock)

Dubai - US stocks advanced for a third day as crude pushed above $50 a barrel before OPEC meets this week. The euro advanced after Angela Merkel said the “too weak” currency shared the blame for Germany’s trade surplus.

The S&P 500 Index’s three-day climb topped 1% following its biggest selloff of the year as investors focused on corporate deals. The euro hit a six-month high after Merkel’s comment. The 10-year Treasury yield edged toward 2.25%. Gold rose and crude climbed to the highest in a month as Saudi Arabia said all producers agree on extending output cuts.

There was relative tranquility across markets, suggesting investors think global growth can weather political turmoil in the U.S. and Brazil, even as the world’s largest economy edges closer to another increase in borrowing costs. Money managers will be scrutinizing minutes released this week from the Federal Reserve’s latest meeting to gauge the chances of a rate hike next month.

Meanwhile, President Donald Trump is trying hard to deflect attention from the domestic political crisis surrounding former FBI Director James Comey. He’s traveling in the Middle East, where US companies have signed multi-billion dollar deals in the defense, energy and infrastructure industries, before continuing on to Europe.

“With Trump on a tour, the hope is we see less news over the next couple of days - a chance for the waters to settle,” said Andrew Sullivan, a managing director for sales trading at Haitong International Securities in Hong Kong. “It’s another overhang on the market. We’ve got all these markets trading at highs and people don’t want to miss out, but they don’t want to be caught out.”

Here are the key events for investors this week:

Donald Trump heads to the Group of Seven and NATO meetings in Europe. Fed officials Patrick Harker and Neel Kashkari are both scheduled to speak on Monday.

Twitter holds its annual meeting the same day. Shareholders will vote on a radical proposal to turn the company into a user-owned cooperative. Eurozone finance ministers discuss Greece’s bailout program, also on Monday.

The Trump administration will release its budget request on Tuesday. Minutes from the May 3 Fed policy meeting will be released  on Wednesday. A key OPEC decision will be made in Vienna on Thursday. South Korea, Canada, South Africa and Thailand set interest rates.

And here are the main movers:

Commodities

West Texas Intermediate oil climbed 0.7% to $50.69 per barrel as of 14:31, extending a 2% advance on Friday. Gold gained 0.2% to $1 258.34 an ounce. The metal jumped 2.2% last week.

Currencies 

The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell 0.2% after its worst weekly performance since July. The euro added 0.4% to $1.1245 after earlier dropping as much as 0.4%. The pound lost 0.2% to $1.3009. The Russian rouble strengthened 0.3%.

Stocks 

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell less than 0.1% following the worst week since November. The S&P 500 rose 0.2% to 2 387.49 after the underlying gauge increased 0.7% on Friday. It’s up 1.3% since Wednesday.

Bonds

Ten-year Treasury yields were little changed at 2.24% following their best week in a month. French and German yields climbed four basis points and three basis points respectively.

Asia

A rally in Tencent helped send Hong Kong shares back toward a 22-month high. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index jumped 1% while the Shanghai Composite slipped 0.5%. Japan’s Topix rose 0.5%.

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