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While you were sleeping: Dow rises on profit bets

Tuesday 13th April 2010

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European bailout plans for Greece and hopes for strong first-quarter earnings from US companies helped nudged Wall Street higher overnight.

In late trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.02%, the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was up 0.12% and the Nasdaq Composite edged 0.12% higher.

Alcoa Inc is poised to begin the earnings season in the next hour.

Among the stocks which advanced were Alcoa, American Express Co and Caterpillar Inc. Acquisitions or rumours of them bolstered Mirant Corp, RRI Energy Inc and Palm Inc.

The Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index, or VIX, which is known as Wall Street’s ‘fear gauge’ fell 4.09% to 15.48.

The Dow Jones STOXX 600 slid 0.1% to 269.36.

The UK’s FTSE 100 added 0.12%, Germany’s DAX gained 0.99%, while France’s CAC ended unchanged in percentage terms, sliding 0.04 of a point to 4050.50.

Among the most actives were Eurazeo SA, National Bank of Greece SA, UBS AG and Infineon Technologies AG.

The Dollar Index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, fell 0.37% to 80.59.

While news of the loan plan for Greece failed to bolster equities across Europe, the euro rallied the most in seven months.

The euro increased as much as 1.4%, according to Bloomberg. It traded at US$1.3582 at 3:23pm in New York. It appreciated 0.7% to 126.65 yen, from 125.79. The dollar traded at 93.24 yen.

The euro will rally to at least $1.38 by the end of the week and will trade at $1.43 within three months as traders rush to cover bets that the euro will fall, according to Credit Suisse Group AG.

Brazil’s real will surge as much as 10% by July as its central bank raises interest rates to stem inflation, spurring purchases by global investors searching for higher yields, forecasts compiled by Bloomberg show.

The Reuters/Jefferies CRB Index, which tracks 19 raw materials, rose 0.03% to 276.20.

Gold and copper both retreated from recent highs in part reflecting a rebound in the euro and the sense that perhaps investors had pushed prices of those two commodities in particular too high too fast.

Spot gold was at US$1,158.50 an ounce at 1754 GMT, against US$1,159.00 late in New York on Friday.

Copper for May delivery shed 2.55 cents to settle at US$3.5645 per lb on the NYMEX's COMEX division.

US oil for May delivery fell 58 cents to settle at US$84.34 a barrel, after earlier rising to US$85.71 a barrel.

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