Economy

Euro, German bund yields hit fresh highs on German coalition progress

Euro, German bund yields hit fresh highs on German coalition progress

Asian stocks resumed their ascent on Friday, supported by U.S. earnings optimism and higher oil prices while the euro edged up as the European Central Bank signalled an end to its massive stimulus.

Current range: 1.1961 to 1.2165. The Australian dollar rose to hit 3-months peak on Thursday as Australian dollar was boosted was boosted by upbeat retail sales data which painted a positive outlook for consumer spending and economic growth, while narrowing the odds on a rate hike this year.

The euro jumped by more than a cent against the dollar, and surged as much as 0.7 percent on the day against the pound to reach 89.115 pence, its strongest position against the British currency since January.

The dollar index slipped to a six-week low, down 0.5 percent.

The minutes showed that with the euro zone seeing its best growth in a decade, European Central Bank policy mkaers were considering a gradual shift in its stance to reduce the focus on bond purchases and raise the emphasis on interest rates.

The dollar stayed in the doldrums after USA wholesale prices dipped in December from November, reinforcing investors' expectations that inflation will remain low.

The EUR/USD rallied because investors interpreted the minutes as hawkish since they could be signaling that the European Central Bank will wind down its 2.55 trillion Euro ($3.07 trillion) bond purchase scheme this year if Europe's economy continues to grow.

Crude oil futures continued to march higher.

"The market is very cautious about the Bank of Japan's policy changes, but it is not expected that they will change their policies any time soon, since CPI is still lower than 1 percent", said Harumi Taguchi, principal economist at IHS Markit in Tokyo.

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World stocks scaled fresh peaks on Friday while the euro hit a three-year high and Bund yields rose as progress on forming a German government gave fresh impetus to a bond market sell-off triggered by signs the European Central Bank may accelerate an end to its stimulus.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 106.63 points, or 0.42 percent, to 25,475.76, the S&P 500 gained 9.1 points, or 0.33 percent, to 2,757.33 and the Nasdaq Composite added 26.87 points, or 0.38 percent, to 7,180.44.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index lost 0.26 percent and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe gained 0.38 percent.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures changed hands at United States dollars 63.55, down 0.4 percent on the day.

The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell 0.5 percent to the lowest in more than 16 weeks on the largest fall in more than a week.

They hovered at 2.56 percent having eased back from Wednesday's 10-month high of 2.597 percent. This is the largest and most important piece of economic data from the U.S. after the employment report and hence, this should bring in a lot of volatility.

New Zealand's currency was also boosted by higher commodity prices, with Brent Crude oil rising above US$70 a barrel for the first time since 2014.

Kashkari's motivation was to allow U.S. inflation rates and wage growth to push higher, but the sentiment concerned traders who are looking forward to three or possibly four interest rate hikes in 2018.