U.S. stocks climb, gold advances as dollar slips
U.S. stocks ticked higher in holiday-thinned trading as investors looked ahead to January and a promised trade breakthrough between the world’s biggest economies. Gold advanced and the dollar drifted lower with Treasuries.
Amazon.com Inc. and other consumer companies led gains on the S&P 500 Index amid reports signaling robust shopping ahead of the Christmas holiday. European markets remained shuttered. Shares ended higher in Tokyo, Shanghai and Seoul, while exchanges were closed in Hong Kong and Sydney.
10-year Treasury yields edged above 1.9 percent while the dollar slipped versus major peers as U.S. jobless claims data came in close to expectations. The Japanese yen headed for its biggest drop in two weeks.
Investors are pushing the $51 trillion MSCI ACWI Index of global stocks toward a more-than 8% advance in the final three months of the year, a quarterly performance only bettered a handful of times in the past decade. As traders digest data showing strong consumer confidence, attention now turns to January, when they’ll look for the U.S. and China to consummate a phase-one trade agreement.
“The consumer continues to be shown as the supporting pillar,” said Tim Courtney, chief investment officer at Exencial Wealth Advisors. “They’re continuing to spend and they’re not cutting back.”In China, the overnight repo rate fell to the lowest level since 2009 Thursday in wake of recent liquidity injections by the central bank.
Elsewhere, the pound rose for a third session. Crude oil climbed above $61 a barrel in New York. Gold advanced beyond $1,500 an ounce, having increased every session this week.