Home / Markets / Stock Markets /  Indian markets to be firm as Asia rises on hopes of US-China trade war ease

Indian stocks markets are likely to be firm on Thursday following stability in global peers. Asian stocks rose on Thursday on hopes for a thaw in US-China trade frictions and expectations that the European Central Bank will kick off another wave of monetary easing by global central banks.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.2% and Japan's Nikkei stock index rose 1%. Australian shares were up 0.41%.

US stock futures jumped and safe-havens such as the yen and gold fell after US President Donald Trump agreed to delay an additional increase in tariffs on Chinese goods by two weeks at the request of China’s Vice Premier Liu He “as a gesture of good will."

Trump’s delay of additional tariffs on Chinese goods comes one day after China said it would exempt 16 types of US products from import tariffs. The world’s two largest economies have been locked in a year-long battle over Beijing’s trade practices that has threatened to push other economies into recession. The gestures of goodwill raise hopes both sides can narrow their differences before working-level resume talks in mid-September and high-level trade negotiations that are expected in October.

Any easing of concerns about the bruising trade war is likely to help equities extend their rally this month after a tumultuous August. Investors also await an ECB meeting later on Thursday to see how far policymakers will go to support a flagging economy, given the risks posed by Britain’s divorce from the European Union, commonly referred to as Brexit.

US stock futures rose 0.57% in Asia on Thursday after the S&P 500 ended 0.72% higher in New York on Wednesday.

Back home, shares of Bhushan Power and Steel Ltd (BPSL) and JSW Steel Ltd are likely to be in focus. Lenders to BPSL have held talks with JSW Steel Ltd, which had won the stressed steel mill bid under the insolvency code, as the acquirer is not entirely happy with the takeover terms cleared by the bankruptcy court, according to a Mint report.

Ford Motor Co is in early discussions with at least one global automobile company to sell one of its twin factories in India, two people familiar with the matter said, underscoring a major shift in strategy for the automaker and its struggles in this intensely competitive market, according to a Mint report.

The dollar briefly rose to a six-week high of 108.04 yen JPY=EBS before paring gains slightly to trade up 0.12% at 107.36 yen.

Spot gold fell 0.23% to $1492.80 per ounce.

The euro held steady at $1.1013 but traded near a one-week low. The ECB is set to unveil fresh stimulus measures on Thursday but its exact moves are far from certain. Germany is at risk of falling into recession and inflation expectations sliding, but ECB President Mario Draghi, who hands over the leadership of the central bank to Christine Lagarde at the end of October, will face resistance to aggressive easing from more conservative ECB members.

Oil prices rose in Asia, rebounding from a tumble on Wednesday, on hopes OPEC members will cut output to support prices. US crude ticked up 0.77% to $56.18 in Asia on Thursday. Futures tumbled more than 2% on Wednesday following a report that Trump is considering easing sanctions on Iran, which could potentially boost oil supplies. Asian traders were likely focused on OPEC’s decision on Wednesday to cut its forecast for global oil demand in 2020. OPEC also said all producers have a shared responsibility to support the oil market.

(Reuters contributed to the story)

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