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Business: Global shares continue rally after Wall Street gains

TOKYO (AP) — Global shares were mostly higher Friday, continuing their rally after gains on Wall Street and hopes that regional trade tensions may ease.

KEEPING SCORE: France’s CAC 40 edged up 0.4 percent in early trading to 5,349.27, while Germany’ DAX rose 0.3 percent to 12,094.64. Britain’s FTSE 100 gained 0.3 percent to 7,300.17. U.S. shares were also set to move higher with Dow futures up nearly 0.2 percent at 26,231. S&P 500 futures were up 0.2 percent at 2,914.60.

ASIA’S DAY: Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 gained 1.2 percent to finish at 23,094.67. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was up 0.6 percent at 6,165.30. South Korea’s Kospi added 1.4 percent to 2,318.25. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 1.0 percent to 27,286.41, while the Shanghai Composite index lost 0.2 percent to 2,681.64.

THE QUOTE: “Gains on Wall Street coupled with the softer U.S. dollar following U.S. inflation disappointments posed a more benign situation for Asia markets into the end of the week as we watch Chinese numbers,” said Jingyi Pan, market strategist at IG in Singapore.

CHINA FACTOR: Investors are worried about the impact on the regional economy of trade tensions under U.S. President Donald Trump’s tariff policies, amid reports of a new round of talks that would give the Chinese government another chance to address U.S. concerns before the Trump administration imposes more tariffs.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude added 37 cents to $68.96 a barrel. It slid 2.5 percent to $68.59 a barrel in New York on Thursday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose 19 cents to $78.37 a barrel in London.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 111.84 yen from 111.45 yen. The euro rose to $1.1714 from $1.1642.

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Investing.com – Here are the top five things you need to know in financial markets on Friday, September 14:

1. U.S. consumer in spotlight on economic agenda

Coming after Thursday’s weaker-than-expected inflation data, shopping takes the spotlight in economic indicators with numbers on retail sales and consumer sentiment arriving later on Friday.

The Commerce Department will release its retail sales data at 8:30 AM ET (12:30 GMT), with a solid rise expected for August, although a slightly lower one from the month before.

Economists expect that retail sales rose 0.4% last month and that core retail sales, which exclude auto sales, rose 0.5%.

At 10:00 AM ET (14:00 GMT), the focus will shift to the University of Michigan’s preliminary measure of consumer sentiment for September.

The consumer sentiment index is expected to have risen to 96.7 from 96.2 in August. There will also be numbers on current consumer conditions and inflation expectations.

In addition, investors will get data on July business inventories, August import and export prices and last month’s reading of industrial production.

And for Fed watchers, Chicago Federal Reserve president Charles Evans will speak on the economy and monetary policy at 9:00 AM ET (13:00 GMT) at the Northeast Indiana Regional Economic Forum.

2. China once again shrugs off Trump threats

After U.S. President Donald Trump suggested that he was “under no pressure to make a deal with China, they are under pressure to make a deal with us”, Beijing was quick to shrug off the claim.

“The Trump administration should not be mistaken that China will surrender to the U.S. demands,” state run China Daily published on Friday.

“It has enough fuel to drive its economy even if a trade war is prolonged,” the paper insisted.

The response came even as data released Friday showed that Chinese fixed investment slowed to just 5.3% in the first eight months of the year, the lowest level on record. The data suggests that businesses in the world’s second largest economy are hesitant to invest as they worry over the prospect of a full-blown trade war.

In more encouraging data, China’s retail sales and industrial production for August both rose more than expected.

3. U.S. futures rise ahead of data dump

U.S. futures pointed to another day of gains on Wall Street Friday as investors looked ahead to a slew of data and kept an eye on trade developments. At 5:46 AM ET (9:46 GMT), the blue-chip Dow futures rose 41 points, or 0.16%, S&P 500 futures gained 5 points, or 0.15%, while the Nasdaq 100 futures traded up 28 points, or 0.37%.

Elsewhere, led by technology, autos and mining stocks, European benchmarks rose on Friday on hopes of new trade talks between the U.S. and China.

Earlier, Asian stocks ended the session mostly higher, though China’s Shanghai Composite broke the trend with losses of 0.2%.

4. Oil prices recover from sharp decline, U.S. rig count on tap

Oil prices recovered on Friday from the prior session’s sharp decline and remained on track for solid weekly gains as investors looked ahead to the latest gauge of U.S. production.

U.S. crude oil futures gained 0.44% to $68.89 at 5:47 AM ET (9:47 GMT), while Brent oil traded up 0.20% to $78.34.

Both barrels were still on track for weekly gains of 1.8% and 2.0%, respectively, as traders await the latest data on U.S. crude production from Baker Hughes.

The U.S. rig count, an early indicator of future output, rose by 2 to 862 last week, hovering near its highest levels since March 2015.

5. Cable hits 6-week high as BoE warns of rate hikes after no deal Brexit

The pound hit a six-week high against the dollar on Friday as Bank of England governor Mark Carney reportedly warned that a no deal Brexit would likely mean higher interest rates.

Carney warned that if the UK and European Union were unable to forge trade deals that the result could be as bad as the 2008 financial crisis, driving the pound lower. The corresponding increase in inflation would likely require the BoE to tighten policy.

At 5:46 AM ET (9:46 GMT), GBP/USD was last up 0.11% at 1.3123, after hitting 1.3138 earlier, its highest level since August 1.

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