Asia Morning August 21

Wall Street sign with a building in background
On Thursday, U.S. stocks closed higher, as the Nasdaq 100 Index (+158 points or 1.40% to 11477) was pushed to another record close by gains in large-cap tech stocks Apple (AAPL +2.22% to $473.10) and Tesla (TSLA +6.56% to $2,001.83). Apple also became the first company with a market value of $2 trillion.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 46 points (+0.17%) to 27739, and the S&P 500 was up 10 points (+0.32%) to 3385.


Nasdaq 100 Index: Daily Chart


Sources: GAIN Capital, TradingView


Software & Services (+1.77%), Technology Hardware & Equipment (+1.77%) and Media (+1.7%) sectors performed the best. Synopsys (SNPS +8.55%), L Brands (LB +3.86%) and Adobe Systems (ADBE +3.56%) were top gainers, while Estee Lauder (EL -6.7%) and Diamondback Energy (FANG -6.17%) lost the most.

Approximately 60.2% (60.8% in the prior session) of stocks in the S&P 500 Index were trading above their 200-day moving average and 63.2% (71.3% in the prior session) were trading above their 20-day moving average.

The U.S. Labor Department reported that Initial Jobless Claims rose to 1.106 million for the week ended August 15 (920,000 expected), and Continuing Claims declined to 14.844 million for the week ended August 8 (15.000 million expected). The Conference Board Leading Index increased 1.4% on month in July (+1.1% expected).

Due later today are Markit U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Mangers' Index (August preliminary reading at 52.0 expected), and Services PMI (51.0 expected), and Existing Home Sales (a rise in annualized rate to 5.40 million units in July expected).

European stocks returned to negative territory. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell 1.07%, Germany's DAX 30 dropped 1.14%, France's CAC 40 slid 1.33%, and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 was down 1.61%.

The benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury yield slipped to 0.644% from 0.685% Wednesday.

Spot gold rebounded $18.00 (+0.94%) to $1,947 an ounce, and spot silver gained 2.02% to $27.24 an ounce.

U.S. WTI crude oil futures (September) declined 0.8% to $42.58 a barrel.

On the forex front, the ICE U.S. Dollar Index eased 0.3% on day to 92.74, after a 0.8% rally in the prior session. 

EUR/USD gained 0.3% to 1.1867. Research firm Markit will release the eurozone's August Manufacturing PMI (52.7 expected) and Services PMI (54.5 expected) later in the day.

GBP/USD bounced 0.9% to 1.3218. Later today, U.K. retail sales for July (+2.0% on month expected), Markit Manufacturing PMI (54.0 expected) and Services PMI (57.0 expected) for August will be reported.

USD/JPY dropped 0.3% to 105.74. This morning, official data showed that Japan's national core CPI was flat on year in July (+0.1% expected).

USD/CAD fell 0.3% to 1.3179. Investors will focus on Canada's June retail sales data due later today (+24.5% on month expected). 

Other commodity-linked currencies were mixed against the greenback. AUD/USD climbed 0.2% to 0.7196 while NZD/USD lost 0.3% to 0.6535.

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