Tuesday, 5 September 2006

Stock markets and economies look hot

Yesterday, I wrote about how well the S&P 500 has recovered from its May-July losses. Well, it's not just the US stock market. From Bloomberg:

Shares in Europe, Asia and Latin America climbed to three-month highs as investors bet economies and earnings will keep growing even as interest rates rise....

The Morgan Stanley Capital International World Index, a measure for equities globally, added 0.6 percent to 1373.02...

Europe's Dow Jones Stoxx 600 Index added 0.4 percent to 337.80, the highest since May 11...

The MSCI Asia-Pacific Index rallied 1.8 percent to 131.66, closing at the highest since May 19...

The MSCI Latin America Index climbed 1.7 percent to 2539.53, its highest since May 16...

The economic news yesterday was generally positive.

In the UK, construction activity accelerated in August, the Chartered Institute for Purchasing and Supply reporting that its index for construction rose to 54.5 from 53.2 in July, while a survey by the Engineering Employers' Federation showed that robust export orders helped the manufacturing sector expand for a 13th consecutive quarter in the latest three months.

Japan also saw positive news, with the Ministry of Finance reporting that capital spending in the April-June quarter rose 16.6 percent from a year earlier and recurring profits at Japanese companies rose 10.1 percent. However, in an indication of the tighter monetary stance of the Bank of Japan, Japan's monetary base fell 20.2 percent in August from a year earlier, the sixth consecutive month of decline.

Meanwhile, the European Central Bank also looks likely to continue monetary tightening after producer prices in the euro zone rose 0.6 percent in July, up from 0.3 percent in June. In the EU25, prices were up 0.7 percent in July compared to 0.2 percent in June.

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