Global markets were higher on Tuesday as the new coronavirus cases slowed in China, helping ease global growth worries.
- European stocks ended mostly higher on Tuesday amid signs the spread of coronavirus is slowing and on hopes central banks will come up with fresh stimulus measures to boost economic growth.
- US stocks showed a notable move to the upside in early trading on Tuesday but gave back some ground over the course of the session. The major averages pulled back well off the record intraday highs set early in the session, although the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 still ended the day at new record closing highs.
- Asian stocks rose even as confirmed cases of the Wuhan coronavirus continued to rise. Investors seemed reassured by Chinese President Xi Jinping’s pledge to win the fight against the coronavirus outbreak.
- Britain’s gross domestic product was flat in the fourth quarter of 2019, following an upwardly revised 0.5% expansion in the previous three-month period and matching market expectations, a preliminary estimate showed. Household spending rose at the weakest rate in four years, while government spending increased the most since the first quarter of 2012. Net trade also contributed positively to growth, while fixed capital formation contracted 1.6% driven by declines in investment in information and communication technology (ICT) equipment, dwellings, transport, and intellectual property products. On the production side, services and construction output rose, while production output declined.
- WTI crude oil edged higher on Tuesday, recovering from a 13-month low of $49.57 a barrel, on expectations that OPEC could extend the current oil production cut agreement or even make deeper curbs if oil demand in China is significantly impacted by the spread of the coronavirus. Chinese authorities said on Tuesday the number of infected jumped to 42,638 and the death toll had risen to 1,016.
The offshore yuan strengthened for the 2nd straight session against the USD on Tuesday as investors continue to bet on further stimulus measures from the Chinese government. The authorities said they will roll out measures to support small and medium-sized enterprises, as many companies are considering to cut staff due to the coronavirus outbreak.
- The offshore yuan reached an intraday high of 6.971 per USD on Tuesday, the strongest in 3 days. Meanwhile, the PBoC set its midpoint reference rate for the yuan at 6.9897 per USD, less than 0.1% weaker than 6.9863 on Monday.
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