Asian shares advanced for a second straight session on Monday, underpinned by coronavirus hopes after the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) authorised the use of blood plasma from recovered patients as a treatment option.
- E-Mini futures for the S&P500 gained 0.3%.
- MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside of Japan jumped 0.65%, moving toward a six-month high touched last week.
- Japan’s Nikkei reversed early losses to be last up 0.4%. Chinese shares rose too with the blue-chip CSI 300 index adding 0.8%.
- South Korea’s KOSPI, which has been on a slippery slope since hitting a more than two-year peak earlier this month, climbed 0.9%.
- In currencies, the dollar was a shade weaker on the safe haven Japanese yen at 105.74.
- The British pound nursed losses after falling 0.9% on Friday on lack of progress in post-Brexit trade talks with the European Union. It was last at $1.3092.
- The euro was defensive at $1.1800 after falling 0.5% on Friday following disappointing manufacturing activity data. That left the dollar index unchanged at 93.154.
- In commodities, oil prices rose on Monday, with Brent crude up 14 cents at $44.49 a barrel and U.S. crude climbing 11 cents to $42.45.
- Gold saw some selling pressure with spot prices off 0.4% at $1,931.54 an ounce.