Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Stock mostly rise on US stimulus, Brexit hopes

Stock mostly rise on US stimulus, Brexit hopes

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Bitcoin extended gains to a fresh record above $22,000. PIXABAY

Stock mostly rise on US stimulus, Brexit hopes

Stock markets mostly gained on December 17 as investors kept an eye on US stimulus progress and the rollout of vaccines but surging infections and new lockdowns tempered gains.

The pound held around 19-month highs against the dollar on Brexit optimism and ahead of a monetary policy update from the Bank of England (BoE) due at 1200 GMT.

The strengthened pound though weighed on London’s benchmark FTSE 100 stocks index featuring multinationals earnings in dollars.

Eurozone equity indices climbed after gains across much of Asia, while the dollar struggled after a US Federal Reserve (Fed) update.

Bitcoin extended gains to a fresh record above $22,000.

The unit, which was wallowing around $5,000 in March, has soldiered higher since online payments giant PayPal said it would enable account holders to use cryptocurrency.

Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at IG trading group, said: “Markets overall are still in a positive frame of mind, managing to find the good news in an otherwise dull Fed statement and looking forward to some progress on a US stimulus deal, the major narrative behind this market bounce.

“Market watchers move on from the non-event of last night’s . . . [Fed] meeting to the BoE meeting, which is likely to be equally dull in terms of any policy decisions.

“But with Brexit just days away the bank’s view of the situation will be of great interest, providing a useful counter to the cycle of briefing and counter-briefing from the UK and EU sides.”

EU negotiator Michel Barnier on December 17 said talks with Britain on a post-Brexit trade deal were progressing but that there had been no breakthrough.

He tweeted: “Good progress, but last stumbling blocks remain. We will only sign a deal protecting EU interests and principles.”

Regarding US stimulus, lawmakers said they were hopeful of passing a much-needed rescue package for the economy as they haggled over details of a bipartisan proposal that appeared to have broken months of deadlock.

With the two most contentious items removed from the plan, which is said to amount to around $900 billion, Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said leaders “made major headway”.

As the stimulus talks continued, the Fed held its final policy meeting of the year at which it gave an upbeat assessment of the outlook for the world’s top economy next year and pledged to maintain its huge bond-buying, monetary-easing programme until it is back on an even keel.

But bank chief Jerome Powell reiterated the need for US lawmakers to reach a stimulus agreement.

MOST VIEWED

  • Cambodia unveils new quarantine regulations

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Cambodia sets new Covid-19 quarantine rules

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Hun Sen: Cambodia set to fully reopen

    Prime Minister Hun Sen concludes that the October 5-7 Pchum Ben public holiday, during which many people either flocked to their hometowns for family reunion or gathered at tourist attractions across the country, has not caused an outbreak of Covid-19. In a special address to

  • Will Evergrande change the way Chinese developers do business in Cambodia?

    China’s property sector policy has exposed the grim financial condition of real estate developers including those operating in Cambodia, which raises questions over the viability of their projects and business going forward The dark blue netting draping over one of Yuetai Group Co Ltd’

  • Cambodia voted ‘world’s friendliest country’ in Rough Guides reader poll

    Cambodia ranked number one among the “World’s Friendliest Countries”, according to a reader poll conducted by London-based international website “Rough Guides”. Taking submissions through Twitter and Facebook, “Rough Guides”, a well-known travel agency and publisher of guidebooks, said the Kingdom “was by far the

  • S’ville set to turn into ‘second Shenzhen’

    The Ministry of Economy and Finance has awarded a master plan consultancy contract to top Chinese institute for the development and transformation of Preah Sihanouk province into a “Model Multi-Purpose Special Economic Zone”, Southeast Asia’s next logistics and resort hub and innovation centre. The