Japanese benchmark leads world stocks higher

HONG KONG - Japanese stocks rocketed Monday, leading a global market rally after dismal growth data raised hopes of extra stimulus for the world's third-biggest economy.

See Full Article

Chinese shares dropped on their first day of trading after a weeklong holiday that coincided with a sharp sell-off in global markets.

Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 soared 7.2 per cent to close at 16,022.58, rebounding from last week's slump to post its second biggest one-day gain in three years.

Stocks rallied after government data showed Japan's economy shrank 1.4 per cent on an annualized basis last quarter because of weak consumer demand and slower exports. It's a setback for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's economic revival program, which aims to stoke inflation through massive monetary easing. However, the latest report also gives the government more reason to open the stimulus taps wider to restore growth, economists said.

"Together with the recent slump in the Nikkei and the appreciation of the yen, the case for additional easing remains compelling," said Marcel Thieliant of Capital Economics. He predicted the Bank of Japan will step up bond purchases and push interest rates that are already in negative territory even lower.

Investor sentiment was also bolstered by comments from China's central bank chief playing down the likelihood of a one-off devaluation of the yuan.

People's Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan signalled in a Caixin magazine interview published over the weekend that there was no basis for further depreciation of China's currency, providing relief for the country's exporting neighbours worried that a weakening yuan would hurt their competitiveness.

Global stock benchmarks followed Japan's lead. European shares opened sharply higher. France's CAC 40 advanced 3.1 per cent to 4,119.57 and Germany's DAX added 2.7 per cent to 9,210.14. Britain's FTSE 100 rose 2 per cent to 5,819.92.

U.S. stocks were poised for a strong open. Dow futures gained 1.2 per cent to 16,102.00. Broader S&P 500 futures increased 1.2 per cent to 1,880.40.

In Asia, South Korea's Kospi climbed 1.5 per cent to 1,862.20 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 3.3 per cent to 18,918.14. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 rose 1.6 per cent to 4,843.50. Taiwan's benchmark was flat while markets in Southeast Asia gained.

The Shanghai Composite Index in mainland China, though, lost 0.6 per cent to finish at 2,746.20 after reopening following the Lunar New Year holiday.

Chinese shares were also weighed down by the latest monthly trade figures. Exports fell 11 per cent while imports slid by nearly a fifth, according to customs data, highlighting persistent weakness in the world's second biggest economy.

Economists, however, were reserving final analysis until figures for February are out because the timing of the Lunar New Year holiday distorts China's economic data at the beginning of the year.

In energy trading, benchmark U.S. crude oil futures lost 30 cents to $29.12 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract climbed $3.23, or 12.3 per cent, on Friday to settle at $29.44 a barrel. Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils, fell 38 cents to $32.98 a barrel in London.

In currencies, the dollar strengthened to 113.78 yen from 113.22 yen on Friday. The euro weakened to $1.1194 from $1.1257.



Advertisements

Latest Economic News

  • Loblaw pre-orders 25 Tesla electric trucks for undisclosed price

    Economic CTV News
    MONTREAL -- Loblaw Companies Ltd. says it is among the first purchasers of Tesla's new electric truck. Canada's largest supermarket chain (TSX:L) says it has pre-ordered 25 of the vehicles called the Tesla Semi. Source
  • Canadian funds like energy stocks despite potential rejection in Norway

    Economic CTV News
    CALGARY -- Oil and gas investments may have soured for managers of the Norwegian sovereign wealth fund but a Canadian fund says it has plenty of room for such securities in its portfolio. In a letter this week, Norway's central bank urged the Norwegian government to consider divesting oil and gas company shares held in the US$1-trillion oil fund to avoid the risk of permanently lower commodity prices. Source
  • Keystone spill clean up underway in South Dakota as pipeline vote looms

    Economic CTV News
    CALGARY -- TransCanada Corp. said Friday that work is well underway to clean up a sizable oil leak at its Keystone pipeline in South Dakota that occurred days before a vote on the fate of the company's flagship pipeline proposal. Source
  • Volkswagen accelerates push into electric cars with big spending plan

    Economic CBC News
    Volkswagen approved a 34-billion-euro ($51 billion Cdn) spending plan on Friday that accelerates its efforts to become a global leader in electric cars. The world's largest carmaker by unit sales will spend the money on electric cars, autonomous driving and new mobility services by the end of 2022, it said after a meeting of its supervisory board. Source
  • Loblaw to be early adopter of Tesla's all-electric Semi

    Economic CBC News
    Walmart is planning to test Tesla's electric trucks in Canada and the U.S., it said Friday, just a day after the unveiling of the all-electric Tesla Semi. The retail giant becomes the second U.S. company to commit to trying the new technology as an alternative to diesel, after J.B. Source
  • Walmart, J.B. Hunt truck operations sign up for Tesla's all-electric Semi

    Economic CBC News
    Walmart is planning to test Tesla's electric trucks in Canada and the U.S., it said Friday, just a day after the unveiling of the all-electric Tesla Semi. The retail giant becomes the second U.S. company to commit to trying the new technology as an alternative to diesel, after J.B. Source
  • Quebec biofuel company partners with Qantas in effort to cut emissions

    Economic CBC News
    A Quebec biofuels company has signed its first deal to power an airline's jets with energy grown from Canadian oilseeds. Agrisoma Biosciences Inc. of Gatineau will supply biofuel to Australia's Qantas Airways made from Carinata seed, a non-food, industrial type of mustard seed that produces oil suitable for aviation and diesel fuel. Source
  • Bombardier to hire 1000 workers in Montreal for Global 7000 business jet

    Economic CTV News
    Bombardier confirmed this morning that it will hire about 1,000 workers over the next 18 months for its new Global 7000 business jet. The workers will complete the interiors for the company's largest business aircraft. Source
  • Bombardier hiring 1,000 to work on Global 7000 aircraft

    Economic CBC News
    Bombardier is hiring about 1,000 workers in the Montreal area to work on its Global 7000 business aircraft program, the company said Friday. The company said the workers will be hired over the next 18 months for interior completion work on the aircraft. Source
  • Teck outlines plan to spend nearly $500 million on dividends, stock buybacks

    Economic CTV News
    VANCOUVER -- Teck Resources has announced plans to issue a special dividend to its shareholders, in addition to its regular dividend, and increase its share buyback program by $230 million. The diversified mining company, based in Vancouver, says the two measures are being taken because of Teck's strong cash position. Source