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Stock indices from Asia-Pacific are recording a rising session following record gains on Wall Street the previous day. Chinese indices are gaining the most, between 1.70-2.00%.

Thursday News
  • Stock indices from Asia-Pacific are recording a rising session following record gains on Wall Street the previous day. Chinese indices are gaining the most, between 1.70-2.00%.
  • The Japanese Nikkei 225 index is up by 0.20%, while the Australian S&P/ASX200 is noted 1.20% higher.
  • Futures contracts on European indices also indicate a slightly higher opening for the cash session. UK100 contracts are gaining about 0.30%. The German DAX index is noted with a slight loss, as bulls currently face resistance around the 18970-19000 points, which is also a historic all-time high and a psychological barrier.
  • In the forex market, the largest movements in the early part of the day can be observed on the Japanese yen, which is the strongest G10 currency. On the other side, among the weakest currencies is the New Zealand dollar NZD.
  • Japan’s GDP report negatively surprised the markets. Preliminary data showed that the Japanese economy contracted by 2.0% annually in the January-March period compared to the previous quarter, against expectations of a 1.5% decline.
  • Weaker GDP data mainly resulted from a 0.7% drop in private consumption in Q1, which was significantly more than the expected 0.2% decline. Consumption accounts for over 50% of Japan’s economic growth.
  • Investment expenditures also performed lower, indicating a decrease of 0.8%, reversing a growth of 1.8% noted in the previous period.
  • The unemployment rate in Australia rose last month more than expected, reducing the risk of another interest rate hike by the RBA. The unemployment rate in April was 4.1%, seasonally adjusted, compared to revised 3.9% in March and expectations of 3.9%.
  • Earlier this month, the RBA predicted that the unemployment rate would be 4% by June, then 4.2% by the end of the year and 4.3% in June 2025.
  • The Kremlin condemned the Thursday attack on Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico and wished him a speedy recovery after he was shot while leaving a government meeting.
  • Today, Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived in China on a two-day high-level visit during which both countries want to further deepen relations that have tightened since Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine over two years ago.
  • Cryptocurrencies are pausing their gains, however, prices are consolidating around the peaks from the end of the previous day. Bitcoin is down 0.60% to 65850 USD, and Ethereum is noted 0.80% lower, still maintaining above the 3000 USD threshold.

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