Stocks rise despite looming US government closure

People walk past an electronic stock board showing the Hang Seng Index at a bank in Hong Kong, Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. Asian stock markets were uneven and the dollar fell on Friday following Wall Street's retreat as the threat of a U.S. federal government shutdown loomed on the weekend. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)
A man walks past an electronic stock board showing the Hang Seng Index at a bank in Hong Kong, Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. Asian stock markets were uneven and the dollar fell on Friday following Wall Street's retreat as the threat of a U.S. federal government shutdown loomed on the weekend. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)
People walk past an electronic stock board showing the Hang Seng Index at a bank in Hong Kong, Friday, Jan. 19, 2018. Asian stock markets were uneven and the dollar fell on Friday following Wall Street's retreat as the threat of a U.S. federal government shutdown loomed on the weekend. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

HONG KONG — Stock markets rose Friday as investors looked past the threat of a U.S. federal government shutdown and focused on a strong underlying economy. The price of oil fell on a report saying U.S. production is set to rise further above 50-year highs.

KEEPING SCORE: Germany's DAX was up 1.1 percent to 13,424 and France's CAC 40 rose 0.5 percent to 5,521. Britain's FTSE 100 gained a more modest 0.3 percent to 7,720 after data showed retail sales fell sharply in the holiday spending month of December. Wall Street was poised to open higher: Dow futures added 0.3 percent and the broader S&P 500's futures edged up 0.2 percent.

SHUTDOWN: U.S. House lawmakers voted for a stopgap funding bill to keep agency doors open and federal workers at their jobs until mid-February, but Senate Democrats and some Republicans were expected to block it on Friday. A shutdown could hurt consumer spending and rattle markets, though it's unlikely to cause widespread economic damage, Credit Suisse economists said in a note on Thursday.

TRADER TALK: Stephen Innes, head of Asia-Pacific trading at OANDA, said that some investors maybe cautious about the U.S. shutdown "but in the bigger scheme of things this case of hiccups is likely to pass as quickly as it arrived."

GLOBAL OUTLOOK: Mostly, investors are driving stock indexes higher — many to record highs — on optimism over the global outlook and corporate earnings. Next week brings a raft of economic data along with meetings by the Bank of Japan and the European Central Bank.

ASIA'S DAY: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 edged 0.2 percent higher to 23,808.06 and South Korea's Kospi gained 0.2 percent to 2,520.26. Hong Kong's Hang Seng ended 0.4 percent higher at 32,254.89 while the Shanghai Composite in mainland China added 0.4 percent to 3,487.86. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 dipped 0.2 percent to 6,005.80. Shares were mixed in Southeast Asia and Taiwan's benchmark rose.

ENERGY: Oil futures retreated after the International Energy Agency said U.S. oil production would rise strongly this year. Benchmark U.S. crude lost 67 cents to $63.28 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, sank 73 cents to $68.58 a barrel.

CURRENCIES: The dollar weakened to 110.54 yen from 111.07 yen in late trading Thursday. The euro strengthened to $1.2262 from $1.2237.

People also read these

WhatsApp is going to share your phone number with Facebook

Aug 25, 2016

Global messaging service WhatsApp says it will start sharing users' phone numbers with Facebook, its parent company

Asian stock markets mixed as investors wait for Fed cue

Aug 26, 2016

Asian stock markets were mixed Friday, with investors preferring to sit on the sidelines ahead of U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen's speech for cues on the timing of the next policy rate hike

Stocks end mostly lower after Yellen speech

Aug 26, 2016

Stocks end mostly lower, giving up earlier gains after Fed Chair Yellen said the case for raising interest rates has strengthened

Subscribe to our newsletter!

Your Name

Your Email Address