New York: Here’s what’s making news today: Portugal’s government debt rating was further downgraded by Moody’s Investor Services, from Aa2 to A1, with the company saying that financial strength of the country’s government will continue to weaken over the medium term. In addition, Greece raised about $2 billion by auctioning off its government debt. The Dow ended up for a 6th day advancing 1.44% while the S&P climbed 1.54% and the Nasdaq increased almost 2%.
In Europe, markets were also higher with the UK’s FTSE 100, Germany’s DAX and France’s CAC 40 all gaining around 2%.
Major Asian indices ended the day lower. Japanese stocks fell on a stronger yen which investors felt could hurt the potential for export revenue and both the Hang Seng and the Shanghai Composite lost ground after China said it would maintain curbs on speculative real estate purchases and help increase market supply.
In corporate news, shares of troubled insurance company AIG surged almost 7% on reports of a possible public offering of its Asian insurance division, AIA. This is an important part of the company’s strategy, which needs to raise funds to pay back the $102 billion it owes US taxpayers.
And much awaited news of Intel’s earnings came after the closing bell, which posted a jump in sales of 34% for the second quarter, giving the company its best quarter in its 42-year history.
In commodities, US light crude oil for August delivery rose $2.12 to $77.07 a barrel while gold for August delivery was up $17 to $1,215.70 an ounce.
In bonds, the yield on the 10-year note rose to 3.12% from 3.05% on Monday as prices of treasuries fell.