Australian market higher at open

Sydney, Feb 16 (IANS) Australian stocks have continued to rally at Tuesday’s open as the market re-focuses on the local earnings season and improving global sentiment after European equities and commodities rose.

At 10:10 local time, the benchmark S&P/ASX200 index was up 22.0 points, or 0.45 percent, at 4,865.5, while the broader All Ordinaries index was up 24.2 points, or 0.49 percent, at 4,917.6, according to Xinhua.

The market is just “petering” along in early trade as investors wait till mid-session when China and Japanese equities come online following Monday’s over-performance after central bank governor Zhou Xiaochuan put his foot down saying the yuan won’t be devalued, IG market strategist Evan Lucas said.

“It’s going to be a very light day because there’s not leads from the US, Europe was playing catch-up to what happened the day before, so we are now waiting to see how China and Japan wake up today to actually work,” Lucas said, adding there will be some “big, interesting macro movers” that will impact the local market all week.

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia is the biggest drag on the benchmark at the open, down 3.64 percent as it trades ex-dividend, however ANZ is up 0.57 percent, the National Australia Bank rose 0.40 percent and Westpac is 0.31 percent stronger.

Gains in commodities during the overnight session saw BHP Billiton lifted 1.88 percent, rival Rio Tinto rose 1.49 percent while gold miner Newcrest dropped 3.64 percent as risk sentiment returned and gold fell.

Oil Search added 1.08 percent, Woodside Petroleum is 0.54 percent firmer however Santos slipped 0.47 percent.

Wesfarmers and Woolworths are 0.91 and 0.27 higher respectively.

Qantas gained 0.78 percent and Telstra edged 0.37 percent higher.

Tokyo stocks open lower as investors opt to secure gains

Tokyo stocks opened lower on Tuesday as investors opted to secure gains made the previous day when the market surged more than 7 percent.

As of 9:15 a.m., the 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average dropped 140. 64 points, or 0.88 percent, from Monday to 15,881.94, Xinhua reported.

The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, fell 9.84 points, or 0.76 percent, to 1,282.39.

Early notable decliners comprised marine transport, glass and ceramics products, and electric power and gas-linked shares.

Dollar in 114 yen zone in early deals in Tokyo

The US dollar was trading in the lower 114 yen zone in Tokyo in early deals on Tuesday morning, with the rate largely unchanged from those seen in London overnight.

At 9 a.m., the dollar was changing hands at 114.37-38 yen compared with 113.76-78 yen in Tokyo at 5 p.m. Monday, Xinhua reported.

On Monday, financial markets in the US were closed for the President’s Day holiday.

The euro, meanwhile, was quoted at $1.1176-$1,177 and 127.82-83 yen against $1.1209-$1,211 and 127.52-56 yen in Tokyo late on Monday afternoon.

Chinese shares open higher on Tuesday

Chinese stocks opened higher on Tuesday, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index up 0.45 percent, at 2,758.58 points.

The smaller Shenzhen index opened 0.61 percent higher at 9,727.76 points, Xinhua news agency reported.

The ChiNext Index, tracking China’s NASDAQ-style board of growth enterprises, gained 0.53 percent to open at 2,128.06 points.

Chinese yuan weakens to 6.5130 against USD

The central parity rate of the Chinese yuan weakened by 12 basis points to 6.5130 against the US dollar on Tuesday, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trading System.

In China’s spot foreign exchange market, the yuan is allowed to rise or fall by 2 percent from the central parity rate each trading day, Xinhua news agency reported.

The central parity rate of the yuan against the US dollar is based on a weighted average of prices offered by market makers before the opening of the interbank market each business day.

China’s new yuan loans soar in January

China’s new yuan-denominated lending in January jumped to 2 trillion yuan ($385 billion), an increase of 71 percent from a year earlier, official data showed on Tuesday.

January’s new yuan loans were also about four times that posted in December 2015, Xinhua news agency reported.

The M2, a broad measure of money supply that covers cash in circulation and all deposits, rose 14 percent year on year to 141 trillion yuan at the end of January, the People’s Bank of China said.

The narrow measure of money supply (M1), which covers cash in circulation plus demand deposits, rose 18.6 percent year on year to 41 trillion yuan, the bank added.

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