Morning Briefing: Oil optimism grows, Japan’s GDP flat

Morning Briefing: Oil optimism grows, Japan’s GDP flat

Morning Briefing: Oil optimism grows, Japan’s GDP flat Oil optimism grows, Japan’s GDP flat
The markets are optimistic that OPEC nations could take new steps to support the oil market and prices continued higher overnight.

Asian equity indexes closed mostly higher led by strong gains for Shanghai which offset negative sentiment from Japan following weaker-then-expected GDP data.

Japan’s economy was forecast to grow at an annualized rate of 0.7 per cent with a quarterly gain of 0.2 per cent; the actual figures were 0.2 per cent for the year, down from 2 per cent in the previous 12 months; quarterly growth was flat at 0.2 per cent.

European markets have gained so far following Asia’s lead but with a hint of caution following the Japanese data.

Wall Street and Toronto are expected to open higher.
 
  Latest 1 month ago 1 year ago
 
North America (previous session)
US Dow Jones 18,576.47 (-0.20 per cent) +0.32 per cent +6.29 per cent
TSX Composite 14,747.45 (-0.33 per cent) +1.83 per cent +3.29 per cent
 
Europe (at 4.30am ET)
UK FTSE 6,937.43 (+0.31 per cent) +4.02 per cent +5.90 per cent
German DAX 10,792.46 (+0.74 per cent) +7.21 per cent -1.75 per cent
 
Asia (at close)
China CSI 300 3,393.42 (+3.01 per cent) +3.58 per cent -16.70 per cent
Japan Nikkei 16,869.56 (-0.30 per cent) +2.25 per cent -17.79 per cent
 
Other Data (at 4.30am ET)
Oil (Brent) Oil (WTI) Gold Can. Dollar
47.42
(+0.96 per cent)
44.96
(+1.06 per cent)
1344.10
(+0.07 per cent)
U$0.7735
 
Aus. Dollar
U$0.7675

 
Why it’s not just Olympians that should go for gold
Gold prices have seen some fluctuation this year amid speculation that the Fed would raise interest rates, perhaps three times, which would typically impact the market.

However, the Fed is now unlikely to make more than one rate rise, possibly none, so gold has gained and at least one expert is predicting that the only way is up.

Jim Rickards told CNBC that investors should hold 10 per cent of their portfolio in gold and see the benefits when inflation rises. "Physical gold is very scarce; when the price really does break upwards, you're not going to be able to get it. The time to get it is now.”

Gold prices have increased 26 per cent year-to-date.