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US stocks rise on strong jobs data

Wall Street stocks rose on Friday after the latest monthly jobs report pointed to strength in the US economy and geopolitical tensions eased.

Technology stocks led the rally, with gains in heavyweight companies such as Apple, Microsoft and Alphabet lifting the S&P 500 tech index to a record high.

Government data showed that in May the US economy added 223,000 nonfarm jobs and average hourly wages increased 0.3 percent, both topping economist estimates. The unemployment rate fell to an 18-year low of 3.8 percent. Data on construction spending and industrial production also pointed to accelerating economic growth.

Markets got a reprieve as Italy installed a coalition government, removing the risk of a repeat vote dominated by debate on whether the country would quit the euro.

Further calming geopolitical concerns, US President Donald Trump announced the resumption of plans for a summit with North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un on June 12.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 219.37 points, or 0.9 percent, to 24,635.21, the S&P 500 gained 29.35 points, or 1.08 percent, to 2,734.62 and the Nasdaq Composite added 112.22 points, or 1.51 percent, to 7,554.33. For the week, the S&P rose 0.48 percent, the Dow lost 0.48 percent, and the Nasdaq gained 1.62 percent.

Dubai and Saudi bourses lead Gulf gains

Gulf markets mostly gained on Thursday, led by Dubai, which was carried upward by renewed buying of shares in heavyweight Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB), and Saudi Arabia.

The Dubai index closed up 1.9 percent, with gains led by a 5.9 percent spike in DIB shares in heavy trade to 5.07 dirhams following the last day of trade in the bank’s rights issue, which allowed purchases of DIB shares at 3.11 dirhams.

Investors had been selling DIB stock to buy the rights before the Wednesday deadline, contributing to its 13 percent decline this year. The Abu Dhabi index rose 1.1 percent.

Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul index likewise rose 1.9 percent, pulled up by Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), the largest company on the bourse. Outside the Gulf, Egypt’s benchmark index sank 2.1 percent, weighed down by electric cable company El Sewedy Cables , down 3.6 percent, and Misr Fertilizers, down 2.9 percent.

China a-shares join MSCI indexes

In a landmark move, index provider MSCI on Friday included more than 230 Chinese stocks, known as A-shares, in its emerging market indexes. A-shares are the stocks of Chinese companies incorporated on the mainland, quoted in renminbi, and listed in Shanghai and Shenzhen.

The move should bring billions of dollars into the Chinese stock market as passive, index-tracking money managers and active fund managers competing against benchmark indexes readjust their holdings.

MSCI will gradually include China’s A-shares in their benchmark MSCI Emerging Markets 891800, +0.74 percent All Country World Index 664204, -0.40 percent and China Index. The initial 5 percent inclusion will be split into two phases, according to Franklin Templeton Investments. The A-shares will have a weighting of 0.4 percent in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index in June, rising to 0.796 percent in September. The MSCI Emerging Markets index tracks $1.9 trillion of securities.

As one of the largest financial markets in the world, investors have clamored for index providers to add A-shares, Chinese stocks listed in Shanghai and Shenzhen. Shanghai’s stock exchange has a market cap of 32.07 trillion yuan ($5 trillion) and Shenzhen’s exchange has a market cap of 22.4 trillion yuan ($3.49 trillion) Investors who hold exchange-traded funds benchmarked to these indexes such as the iShares Core MSCI Emerging Markets ETF EEM, -0.04 percent will end up owning China A-shares.

Sri Lanka stocks lower

Sri Lanka stocks were lower after the close on Thursday, as losses in the diversified holdings, plantations and construction & engineering sectors led shares lower.

At the close in Colombo, the CSE All-Share declined 0.35percent to hit a new 3-months low. The best performers of the session on the CSE All-Share were SMB Leasing PLC, which rose 20.00percent or 0.1000 points to trade at 0.6000 at the close. Meanwhile, Selinsing PLC added 14.12percent or 86.60 points to end at 700.00 and Carson Cumberbatch PLC was up 12.80percent or 21.50 points to 189.50 in late trade.

 

Hong Kong stocks recover

Hong Kong stocks on Thursday bounced back from the previous day’s sell-off as fears over political turmoil in Italy subsided, while investors also cheered upbeat data on Chinese factory activity.

The Hang Seng Index climbed 1.37 percent, or 411.77 points, to 30,468.56. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index advanced 1.78 percent, or 54.03 points, to 3,095.47 and the Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China’s second exchange, jumped 1.80 percent, or 31.21 points, to 1,767.55.

Tokyo stocks higher

Tokyo stocks higher on Thursday, helped by rallies on Wall Street, rebounding from falls the previous day on worries over political uncertainty in Italy.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 0.63 percent or 139.48 points to 22,158.00 in early trade while the broader Topix index was up 0.58 percent or 10.09 points at 1,746.22.

TSX slips as financials weigh

Canada’s main stock index opened lower on Thursday, weighed down by losses in financial stocks.

At 9:30 a.m. ET (1330 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 65.47 points, or 0.41 percent, at 15,983.19.

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