US Stock Futures Point To Higher Open After Government Shutdown

 @AmruthaGayathri
on October 01 2013 6:49 AM

U.S. stock index futures suggest a higher opening to markets on Tuesday, despite the government shutdown after the House and the Senate failed to agree on a federal spending bill due to a discord over the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 0.37 percent, while futures on the Standard & Poor's 500 Index were up 0.48 percent and those on the Nasdaq 100 Index were up 0.34 percent.

“The market is anticipating that a shutdown means the Federal Reserve will also maintain its easy policy stance for longer because of the risks to the U.S. economy,” Greg Gibbs, a senior currency strategist at Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc in Singapore, told Bloomberg. “We are seeing some strength in the European currencies and a bit of weakness in the U.S. dollar.”

Investors will also be watching Markit's purchasing managers’ index, or PMI, for the manufacturing sector and the ISM manufacturing composite index, as well as data on construction spending, scheduled to be released on Tuesday.

In Europe, markets traded higher on Tuesday, as traders brushed off the U.S. government shutdown following a host of broadly positive economic data from the region. Euro zone’s manufacturing PMI, published by Markit, expanded to 51.1 in line with a preliminary reading released a week ago, but slightly lower than the 51.4 reading -- a 26-month high -- recorded in August. Unemployment in the 17-nation euro zone and 28-member EU remained unchanged at 12 percent and 10.9 percent respectively in August, according to data released by Eurostat on Tuesday.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index climbed 0.33 percent, London’s FTSE 100 dropped 0.23 percent, Germany's DAX-30 was up 0.62 percent and France's CAC-40 was up 0.74 percent.

In Asia, most markets surged as investors were prepared for the effects of U.S. government shutdown, which many believe strengthens the argument for the U.S. Fed to prolong its ultra-loose monetary policy. Meanwhile, Chinese government data released on Tuesday showed activity in the Chinese manufacturing sector fell marginally short of expectations but managed to edge up to 51.1 in September from a reading of 51 registered in August.

In Japan, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced on Tuesday an increase in sales tax to 8 percent from the current level of 5 percent, to be effective from April 2014, and a 5 trillion yen ($51 billion) stimulus package to offset the higher tax burden on the economy.

Japan’s Nikkei ended up 0.20 percent while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 closed lower at 0.23 percent. Markets in Hong Kong and China were closed on Tuesday. South Korea’s KOSPI Composite index was up 0.10 percent while India's BSE Sensex ended the day up 0.71 percent.

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