GBP rallied 1% against the USD yesterday and almost reached a three-month high against the EUR after British Brexit Minister David Davis indicated that London would consider paying for access to European markets after Brexit. The pound rose as much as 1.6% to a three-week high against the dollar at $1.2696. The euro rose 0.7% overnight after Reuters reported the European Central Bank will extend its bond purchases beyond next March.
Currencies: The EUR was boosted further after French President Francois Hollande said he will not seek a second term, a move seen paving an easier path for conservative Francois Fillon to defeat Marine Le Pen, head of the National Front party. USD fared better against the JPY. The U.S. currency was flat at 113.990 yen after rising to a near 10-month high of 114.830 the previous day, and on its way for a 0.6% weekly gain.
Oil and Gold: Oil prices surged as much as 5% on Thursday, with Brent crude at its highest in nearly 16 months. The gains came after OPEC and Russia agreed to restrict output to reduce the global supply glut more quickly. Yesterday, Gold was trading around $1,174 an ounce in Asia after hitting a 10-month low of $1,160.38 an ounce in the previous session. The yellow metal had fallen more than 8% in November and the outlook is not positive in the short-term as the US interest rate hike is likely.
Stocks: The Dow Jones industrial average rose about 70 points. The S&P 500 fell about 0.4% with information technology falling more than 2% while financials gained more than 1.5%. The Nasdaq under-performed, falling about 1.4% as Apple and most of the so-called “FANG” stocks (Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google parent Alphabet) fell. The Nasdaq 100 shed more than 1.5 percent, giving up its post-election gains.