US markets finally claim the 20,000 point mark
After the Dow closed above 20,000 points for the first time in history on Thursday (Australian time), this morning it was hovering in the vicinity of 20,100 points just before the close with measured confidence across most sectors even though reporting season has been mixed.
The NASDAQ has also maintained its position well above the 5600 mark, hitting 5670 points early in the session before retracing to circa 5650 points.
On the political front, it would appear that President Trump has a worthy social media adversary in Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto.
After Trump signed off on an executive order to build an immigrant blocking wall between the two countries, the Mexican president flooded his social media channels, saying he doesn’t believe in walls and that he regrets and disapproves of the decision to continue the construction of the wall that will only lead to division.
A planned meeting between the two leaders which was due to occur on January 31 was subsequently cancelled by the Mexican president after he was told by Trump to stay home if he didn’t want to pay for the wall.
Former Mexican president, Vincente Fox Quesada who first started the social media wars with Trump was even more pointed with this twitter post being released in the last 24 hours in response to developments regarding the #f****** wall.
European markets were mixed with the FTSE 100 flat, the DAX up 0.3% and the Paris CAC 40 down 0.2%.
Fluctuations in the UK tended to be a reflection of reporting season as the Unilever plc disappointed and Diageo plc delivered a strong first half profit. With the latter leveraged to alcohol consumption, perhaps the school of thought that investing in chocolates, tobacco and alcohol when times are tough isn’t a bad strategy.
On the commodities front, oil finished up 2% while gold extended the previous day’s losses as it fell below US$1200 an ounce to hit a low of US$1187 per ounce before closing just above US$1190 per ounce.
All base metals trended lower with a marked decline in the nickel price as it fell from the previous day’s close of US$4.37 per pound to US$4.23 per pound.
The Australian dollar was fetching US$0.755 as US markets drew to a close.
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