Futures Higher on BoJ Easing, Eyeing BoE, ECB
U.S. equity futures rose on new rounds of easing from the Bank
of Japan in hopes that continued and increased central bank
stimulus can continue to prop up the global economy.
The BoJ is to increase purchases to seven trillion yen per
month, or about $73.7 billion per month, switch its policy to
targeting to expand the monetary base from lowering overnight
rates, double its holdings of JGBs in two years and suspend the
bank note rule, allowing additional easing. The BoJ expects to
achieve the two percent inflation goal in two years.
In other news around the markets:
Spain sold 4.3 billion euros of 3-, 5-, and 8-year bonds when it
expected to sell only 3-4 billion euros of bonds. Yields were
slightly higher than the previous auction in the shorter maturities
but the 8-year auction was the strongest. The Eurozone Services PMI
dropped to 46.4 in March from 46.5 in February on expectations of a
reading of 46.5. Weakness in Germany and France weighed while Italy
and Spain's services PMIs were slightly stronger than expected. The
British services PMI jumped to 52.4 in March from 51.8 in February
when economists were expecting a decline to 51.5. S&P 500
futures gained 7.1 points to 1,556.30. The EUR/USD was lower at
1.2799. Spanish 10-year government bond yields fell to 4.83 percent
from 4.9 percent. Italian 10-year government bond yields fell to
4.52 percent from 4.59 percent. Gold declined 0.46 percent to
$1,545.70 per ounce, briefly touching a low of $1,540.00, the
lowest since May of 2011.
Asian shares were mostly lower save for Japan on fears of a
North Korean nuclear threat. The Japanese Nikkei spiked 2.2 percent
as the Shanghai Composite Index and the Hang Seng Index were
closed. Also, the Korean Kospi declined 1.2 percent and Australian
shares fell 0.89 percent.
European shares were mostly higher ahead of interest rate
decisions and policy statements from the Bank of England and the
European Central Bank. The Spanish Ibex Index rose 1.51 percent
following the strong debt auction and the stronger than expected
services PMI and the Italian FTSE MIB Index gained 1.48 percent on
the services PMI. Meanwhile, the German DAX rose 0.39 percent and
the French CAC gained 0.74 percent while U.K. shares slipped 0.08
Commodities were once again laggards overnight as most major
commodities traded lower. WTI Crude futures slid further to $94.40
per barrel and Brent Crude futures rose 0.23 percent to $107.29 per
barrel. Copper futures slid 0.3 percent to $332.30 as the bearish
sentiment in copper continues to reign. Gold was sharply lower and
silver futures were flat at $28.62 per ounce.
Currency markets were in flux with the yen absolutely tanking
overnight following the massive easing moves from the Bank of
Japan. The EUR/USD was lower at 1.2799 and the dollar strengthened
against the yen to 95.43, a gain of 2.57 percent. Overall, the
Dollar Index gained a whopping 0.68 percent on strength against the
yen, the euro, the pound, the Swiss franc, and the Canadian dollar.
Notably, the Australian dollar reversed recent strength against the
greenback overnight and the yen was weak across the board.
Stocks moving in the pre-market included:
Sarepta Therapeutics (NASDAQ:
) shares rose 1.53 percent pre-market following a new rating at
Baird of outperform with a price target of $63, representing about
85 percent upside in the stock. Compuware (NASDAQ:
) shares fell 2.99 percent after the company issued weak
preliminary fourth quarter results. Zynga (NASDAQ:
) shares fell 2.55 percent pre-market after jumping Wednesday on
news that the company is set to launch real money gaming in the
U.K. this week. Facebook (NASDAQ:
) shares gained 1.37 percent pre-market following positive comments
from OTR Global.
Notable companies expected to report earnings Thursday
Greenbrier Companies (NYSE:
) is expected to report second quarter EPS of $0.37 vs. $0.57 a
year ago. RPM International (NYSE:
) is expected to report third quarter EPS of $0.06 vs. $0.05 a year
On the economics calendar Thursday, the Bank of England and the
European Central Bank are expected to release policy statements.
Also, jobless claims are due out ahead of the Non-Farm Payrolls
report tomorrow and speeches from Fed President Charles Evans and
Chairman Ben Bernanke are expected. Overnight, Eurozone GDP and
German Factory Orders should move markets.
Good luck and good trading.
(c) 2013 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment
advice. All rights reserved.
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