Economic Indicators 5/11/12

International markets

U.S. stocks fell sharply on Friday, as cheer over better-than-expected employment data gave way to nervousness ahead of the U.S. presidential election next week. Positive U.S. jobs data boosted European stock markets Friday, with the region’s benchmark index posting a 1.6% rise for the week. Asia stocks traded mostly lower this morning, with investors cautious ahead of the U.S. presidential election, with resource shares and Korean car makers among the top decliners.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 139.46 points, or 1.1%, to 13 093.16. It had traded as high as 13 289.45. The blue-chip index posted a 0.1% decline for the week. The S&P 500 index lost 13.39 points, or 0.9% to end at 1 414.20, with energy and materials the biggest losers among its 10 major industry groups. For the week, the index gained 0.2%. The Nasdaq Composite index fell 37.93 points, or 1.3%, to 2 982.13. For the week, it dropped 0.2%.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index rose 0.4% to close at 274.85, after swinging between small gains and losses ahead of the U.S. data. The FTSE 100 index rose 0.1% to 5 868.55, and ended the week 1.1% higher. In Frankfurt, the DAX 30 index picked up 0.4% to 7 363.85. On a weekly the basis, the DAX gained 1.8%. And in Paris, the CAC 40 index closed 0.5% higher at 3 492.46.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index slipped 0.4%, while Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average lost 0.7%. South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.6%, and the Shanghai Composite index edged down 0.4%, although Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index traded up 0.4%.

The US dollar is currently trading at 1.28 to the euro, 1.60 to the pound and will buy 80.40 Japanese Yen or 8.75 South African Rand.

Domestic markets

The JSE All Share index was up 0.77% to 37 664.81‚ with the Top 40 gaining 0.82%. The industrial index was up 0.89%‚ while platinums closed 1.12% higher and gold counters shed 1.44%.

The benchmark R157 bond was trading at 5.455%, the same as its previous close. The R207 was trading at 6.470% from its previous close of 6.440%, and the R186 was bid at 7.690% and offered at 7.675% from its previous close of 7.685%.


Spot gold is currently trading at US$ 1 682.80/oz and platinum at US$ 1 549.60/oz. Brent crude oil is currently trading at US$ 105.91 per barrel.


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