Asia stocks hovered near four-month highs on Monday after a mixed performance on Wall Street at the close of last week, while the dollar firmed against the yen following strong U.S. job and manufacturing data. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was almost flat. It had scaled a four-month peak on Friday along with a surge in its global peers. Trade was subdued with many of the region’s markets closed for the Lunar New Year. China’s financial markets are closed all week, while those in South Korea are shut until Thursday. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng, which is trading for only half a day, edged up 0.2 percent. Japan’s Nikkei added 0.5 percent. On Wall Street on Friday optimism from a surge in January U.S. job growth was offset by a weaker-than-expected outlook from Amazon.com Inc that battered retail stocks. The Dow nudged up 0.26 percent while the Nasdaq shed 0.25 percent.
In main currencies, regarding EUR/USD, failed to extend its gains beyond 1.1500 despite multiple intraday attempts, as European data suggested that the economic slowdown in the Union deepened at the beginning of 2019. Regarding GBP/USD, ever since the House of Commons sent Prime Minister May to renegotiate the Brexit deal without a backstop, interest for the Pound decreased, as negotiations around the UK exit from the Union are in a stalemate that will be hard to break, and the departure day is less than two months away.
In commodities, Gold took a U-turn from near-term “Rising Wedge” resistance on Thursday. Strong US Nonfarm Payrolls extended the bullion’s pullback on Friday whereas lack of fresh signals continued dragging the quote downwards in early Asian trading at the week start. U.S. crude oil futures extended Friday’s rally and were last up 0.3 percent at $55.42 per barrel. On Friday, WTI futures had rallied 2.7 percent on the upbeat U.S. job report, signs that Washington’s sanctions on Venezuelan exports have helped tighten supply and data showing U.S. drillers cut the number of oil rigs.
For today as per the economic calendar there are not high impact news, however worth the effort to focus on Spanish Unemployment Change figure to be announced.