Sydney – Asian shares rallied on Monday as favourable United States jobs data whetted risk appetites. Meanwhile, oil rises.
In commodity markets, oil prices pushed higher as the dollar eased. Brent rose to 77.63 dollars a barrel.
U.S. crude futures rose to 74.15 a barrel.
Sterling wobbled after the shock resignation of two UK ministers over Brexit threatened the survival of Prime Minister Theresa May.
The pound peeled off around a third of a U.S. cent to 1.3290 dollars as news broke British Brexit Secretary David Davis and Brexit Minister Steven Baker had resigned.
The move came just two days after a meeting at May’s Chequers country residence supposedly sealed a cabinet deal on Brexit.
This event underlines the deep divisions in her ruling Conservative Party over the departure from the EU.
Sentiment in other markets was mostly positive after Friday’s U.S. payrolls report showed tame wages and more people looking for work.
The balanced report helped Wall Street into the black and Japan’s Nikkei followed with gains of 1.2 per cent. E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 firmed 0.3 per cent and European bourses were set to open higher.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan climbed 1.3 per cent, on top of 0.7 per cent rally on Friday when the launch of U.S. tariffs on Chinese imports came and went without too many fireworks.
Chinese shares managed to rally on Monday with the Shangahi blue chip index up 2.2 per cent after hitting its lowest in almost 18 months last week.
China’s securities regulator said on Sunday it plans to ease restrictions on foreign investment in stock listed on Shanghai or Shenzhen exchanges to attract foreign capital and support the economy.
The focus this week would be on Chinese data for June covering inflation, new loans and international trade.
The United States also releases inflation figures, while the Bank of Canada might well hike rates on Wednesday.
In currency markets, the U.S. dollar was mostly softer following the jobs report, with sterling being an outlier.
Against a basket of currencies the dollar had pulled back to 93.853, from a top of 94.486 on Friday.
The euro held its gains at 1.1767 dollars, while the dollar was flat on the yen at 110.44.
Gold was 0.5 per cent firmer at 1,260.20 dollars an ounce.