For the first time in three days Asian stocks are higher, led by banks and mining companies on profit optimism.

  • Korea Exchange Bank and Westpac Banking Corporation posted better-than-estimated earnings.  Korea Exchange Bank jumped 7% after stating third quarter profit almost tripled.  Westpac, Australia's number 2 bank, added 1.4% in Sydney.
  • Australian retail sales unexpectedly dropped in September, driving down the nation's currency as traders added to bets the central bank may pause after two successive interest-rate hikes.
  • The US dollar remains vulnerable to the likelihood that the Federal Reserve will repeat its commitment to keep borrowing costs at a record low for an extended period.
  • Gold jumped to a record $1088.50 an ounce in New York yesterday after India's central bank purchased 200 tons of the metal from the International Monetary Fund adding $6.7 billion to the IMF's finances.  In a press release the IMF said the deal with India represents only about half of the total amount of gold the institution intends to sell.
  • Other possible buyers for the remaining quarter are either China or Russia.  Both nations have made very public moves lately to diversify their holdings in an attempt to reduce their dependency on the buck.  China's largest gold company, and Sumitomo Metal Mining, Japan's top producer, gained at least 2.9%.

Currency to watch out for: EURUSD & Gold

  • The EURUSD pivot point is at 1.4670 with a preference to enter into long positions at 1.4680
  • The Gold pivot point is at 1064 with a preference to enter into long positions at 1070

Today's calendar and market movers:

  • US ADP Non-Farm Employment Change expected to rise to -188,000
  • US Crude Oil Inventories expected to rise to 1.7 million
  • US Federal Funds Rate expected to remain unchanged, followed by the FOMC Statement

Stocks:

  • US stocks finished mixed with the S&P and NASDAQ up 0.2% and 0.4% respectively and the Dow off 0.2%.
  • As of 07:15 GMT the Nikkei is trading at 0.42% and the Hang Seng at 1.58%