Asian shares edge up to three-month high, dollar marks time before Fed
By Swati Pandey SYDNEY (Reuters) - Asian shares rose on Monday to a three-month high as risk assets got a fillip from hopes of a U.S.-China trade deal as soon as next month while the dollar marked time as focus shifts to a U.S. rate decision. In early Asian trades, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.2% for its third straight day of gains to 518.29, the highest since late July.
By Swati Pandey
SYDNEY (Reuters) - Asian shares rose on Monday to a three-month high as risk assets got a fillip from hopes of a U.S.-China trade deal as soon as next month while the dollar marked time as focus shifts to a U.S. rate decision.
In early Asian trades, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan <.MIAPJ0000PUS> added 0.2% for its third straight day of gains to 518.29, the highest since late July.
Japan's Nikkei <.N225> was also upbeat, rising 0.3% to a decade high.
The gains came after a positive session in U.S. and European markets on Friday.
U.S. and Chinese officials are "close to finalising" some parts of a trade agreement after high-level telephone discussions on Friday, the U.S. Trade Representative's office and China's Commerce Ministry said, with talks to continue.
U.S. President Donald Trump has said he hopes to sign the deal with China's President Xi Jinping next month at a summit in Chile.
The protracted trade war between the world's largest economies has hurt manufacturing activity, exports and business confidence globally while denting profits of many major industrial firms.
Optimism that Beijing and Washington were finally close to resolving their dispute led the S&P500 <.SPX> to surpass its July 26 closing record of 3,025.86, though it ended a tad below that level on Friday. The S&P 500's total return index <.SPXT> posted an all-time high.
E-mini futures for the S&P 500
Strong results from companies including Intel
Investors next await earnings from the likes of Alphabet Inc
Activity later in the week will be dominated by the U.S. Federal Reserve, which markets expect is all but certain to lower interest rates at its Wednesday meeting.
The Bank of Japan meets on Thursday. On Friday, indicators for Chinese and U.S. manufacturing will be released.
"The outcome of the FOMC policy meeting will most likely draw the largest market reaction," said Richard Grace, Sydney-based chief currency strategist at Commonwealth Bank.
"We also think the risk is the FOMC will articulate a pause," for future rate decisions, Grace added.
"That means the 27.6% pricing for an additional 25 bps cut in December will quickly evaporate, sending U.S. yields and the USD higher."
In currencies, the dollar index <.DXY> was unchanged at 97.822 against a basket of six major currencies. The Japanese yen was a tad lower at 108.72.
The European Union agreed to London's request for a Brexit deadline extension but set no new departure date. That gave Britain's divided parliament time to decide on Prime Minister Boris Johnson's call for a snap election.
Earlier, sources told Reuters the 27 European Union countries that will remain after Brexit hope to agree on Monday to delay Britain's divorce until Jan. 31 with an earlier departure possible.
"It feels like the calm before a potential storm, where the event risk heats up with political twists and turns, key economic data and central bank meetings," said Chris Weston, Sydney-based strategist at Pepperstone.
Oil prices climbed, supported by optimism on the trade front and by falling U.S. crude stocks.
(Editing by Jacqueline Wong)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.