Global shares start busy data week solidly

Global shares start busy data week solidly
The Associated Press

LONDON (AP) — Global stock markets advanced Monday ahead of a raft of potentially market-moving economic data from around the world that culminates with U.S. jobs data for April.

KEEPING SCORE: In Europe, Germany’s DAX was up 0.1 percent to 12,591 while the CAC 40 of France rose 0.4 percent to 5,499. The FTSE 100 in Britain climbed 0.5 percent to 7,537. U.S. stocks were poised for solid gains at the open too with Dow futures and the broader S&P 500 futures up 0.4 percent.

BUSY WEEK AHEAD: The data will start ramping up through the week. As well as the monthly U.S. jobs data, traders will have a series of manufacturing and services surveys to digest, as well as the next meeting of the U.S. Federal Reserve. The news flow out of the U.S. could well alter market expectations on the speed at which the Fed will raise interest rates.

SUPERMARKET MERGER: In Britain, much of the attention in the markets was on the surprise announcement that Sainsbury’s has agreed to buy Walmart’s U.K. unit, Asda, for 7.3 billion pounds ($10.1 billion) in cash and stock in a deal that would create Britain’s largest supermarket chain and marks a profound shift in the country’s grocery market. The deal combines Britain’s second- and third-largest supermarket chains, giving the combined company 31.4 percent of the market and putting it ahead of the current leader, Tesco, which has 27.6 percent, according to data from Kantar Worldpanel.

ANALYST TAKE: ‘Sainsbury and Asda have clearly decided there’s strength in numbers as they battle the headwinds currently buffeting the U.K. retail sector,” said Laith Khalaf, Senior Analyst, Hargreaves Lansdown.

THE DAY IN ASIA: The Hang Seng in Hong Kong climbed 1.7 percent to 30,808.45 and South Korea’s Kospi added 0.9 percent to 2,515.38. The S&P ASX 200 in Australia added 0.5 percent to 5,982.70. India’s Sensex advanced 0.5 percent to 35,135.41. Shares also rose in Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia. Markets in mainland China and Japan were closed for holidays.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude fell lost 81 cents to $67.29 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange while Brent crude, used to price international oils, shed 88 cents to $73.76 per barrel.

CURRENCIES: The euro fell 0.4 percent to $1.2078 while the dollar rose 0.3 percent to 109.34 yen.