LONDON (AP) — Buoyed by the Dow Jones’ first-ever breach of the 20,000 mark, global stock markets eked out further gains on Thursday.
KEEPING SCORE: The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was up 0.2 percent to 7,178 while Germany’s DAX rose 0.5 percent to 11,660. The CAC-40 in France was 0.1 percent higher at 4,881. U.S. stocks were headed for further gains, albeit modest ones, at the open with both Dow futures and the broader S&P 500 futures up 0.1 percent.
DOW RECORD: The main driver in markets remained Wednesday’s milestone for the Dow. The hope, certainly among the ranks of the investing community on Wall Street is that the new Trump administration will be good for business, through a variety of policy changes on trade, tax and regulation.
ANALYST TAKE: “Donald Trump joined in on the celebrations of yesterday’s 20,000 marker and to a large degree he is to thank for it coming to fruition,” said Joshua Mahony, market analyst at IG. “Despite the divisive nature of Trumps policies, markets have come to the realization that money talks, and with many of his other policies coming to fruition, it seems a fiscal spending package is just around the corner.”
LUNAR NEW YEAR: Markets in China, Hong Kong, South Korea and other Asian countries are about to begin holidays of varying lengths to mark the lunar new year, curtailing trading across much of the region.
ASIA’S DAY: The Dow’s record high close was front page news across the region. Japan’s Nikkei 225 surged 1.8 percent to 19,402.39 and South Korea’s Kospi gained 0.8 percent to 2,083.59. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index advanced 1.4 percent to 23,374.17. The Shanghai Composite index rose 0.3 percent to 3,159.17.
OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude oil added 15 cents to $52.90 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained 21 cents to $55.63 a barrel in London.
CURRENCIES: The euro fell 0.3 percent to $1.0726 while the dollar rose 1 percent to 114.34 yen.