Australian Stocks Surge amid Holiday Week for Major Asian Markets

Australian stocks rose on Wednesday as a majority of Asian markets closed for holidays.

The ASX 200 rose 0.8% on the day, with the subindex adding 1.4% and closing at 6,375.90. Australia’s Big Four banks saw their shares push higher with Australia and New Zealand Banking Group recording the highest gains of 2.76%.

Westpac gained 2.29%, National Australia Bank added 1.70% and the Commonwealth Bank of Australia weighed in with 1.32%.

S&P 500 rose to new-highs of about 0.1% within 12 hours of trading on Wall Street, closing at 2,945.83. Dow Jones Industrial Average also closed its trading day at 26592.91 gaining 38 points.

This week is basically the busiest for companies as its earnings season. In fact, the rate of activity has gone up already two days into the week with over half of S&P 500 companies having reported by Wednesday morning.

Investors are on standby awaiting the developments in the U.S.-China trade talks. Mick Mulvaney, Chief of Staff in White House said on Tuesday that the trade talks are expected to end in two weeks time.

The United States Federal Reserve has planned to launch its monetary policy decision on Wednesday stateside. Federal Reserve monitors are on the lookout to see if the central bank will change its dovish tone as well as its blueprint on the progress to reduce the balance sheet.

Before then, U.S. president Donald Trump has told the Fed to reduce interest rates by 1% and see to the implementation of more quantitative easing. He tweeted saying that with a loose U.S monetary policy, the economy would shoot.

The U.S dollar index (USDX) which measures the U.S. dollar against a basket of other currencies closed at 97.491, a drop from the previous 97.528.

The Japanese yen was exchanged at 111.49 with the U.S dollar which was high. It previously traded at 111.6.  The Australian dollar rose with $0.0014, trading at $0.7049 compared to its previous low of $0.7035.

Prices of oil went down during the afternoon of Asian trading hours. Brent crude futures contract went down by 0.67% which is $71.58 per barrel.