Asia Morning August 19

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By :  ,  Financial Analyst

Asia Morning: S&P Breaks Record Finally

On Tuesday, the S&P 500 Index added 7 points (+0.23%) to 3389, eventually surpassing its February record close of 3386. The Nasdaq 100 Index rose 110 points (+0.98%) to a fresh record close of 11399, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 66 points (-0.24%) to 27778.

S&P 500 Index: Daily Chart

Sources: GAIN Capital, TradingView

Retail (+1.95%), Media (+1.29%) and Technology Hardware & Equipment (+0.61%) sectors were the best performers, while Bank (-1.75%), Energy (-1.71%) and Automobiles & Components (-0.91%) sectors lagged behind. (AMZN +4.09%), Microchip Technology (MCHP +3.86%), Alphabet (GOOG +2.68%) and Tesla (TSLA +2.80%) are top gainers, while Kohl's (KSS -14.67%) and Macy’s (M -8.39%) were top losers.  

Shares of Oracle (ORCL +2.2%) rose on reports that the company is in talks to buy TikTok's operations in the U.S. from Chinese owner ByteDance.

Approximately 61.0% (62.6% in the prior session) of stocks in the S&P 500 Index were trading above their 200-day moving average and 76.4% (76.8% in the prior session) were trading above their 20-day moving average.

Regarding U.S. economic data, Housing Starts jumped to an annualized rate of 1.496 million units in July (1.245 million units expected). Building Permits increased to 1.495 million units (1.326 million units expected).

European stocks were broadly lower. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index dropped 0.56%. Germany's DAX 30 slipped 0.30%, France's CAC 40 lost 0.68%, and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 was down 0.83%.

U.S. government bond prices remained firm, as the benchmark 10-year Treasury yield declined further to 0.662%.

Spot gold price advanced $17.00 (+0.86%) to $2,002 an ounce, and spot silver price added 0.67% to $27.67 an ounce.

U.S. WTI crude oil futures (September) were little changed at $42.89 a barrel.

On the forex front, the ICE U.S. Dollar Index dropped 0.5% on day to 92.32, the lowest level since May 2018.

EUR/USD climbed 0.6% to 1.1937, up for a fifth straight session.

GBP/USD jumped 1.1% to a seven-month high of 1.3244. Later today, U.K. CPI data for July will be released (+0.4% on year expected).

USD/JPY slid 0.6% to 105.38. This morning, official data showed that Japan's exports declined 19.2% on year in July (-20.9% expected), while core machine orders dropped 7.6% on month in June (+2.0% expected).

USD/CAD fell 0.4% to 1.3161. Canada's CPI data for July will be reported later in the day (+0.6% on year expected).

Other commodity-linked currencies strengthened against the greenback. AUD/USD rose 0.5% to 0.7250 and NZD/USD advanced 0.7% to 0.6604.

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