Asian shares have firmed on renewed hopes for a coronavirus vaccine after AstraZeneca resumed its phase-3 trial, although sentiment was still cautious before a big week of central bank meetings in the United Kingdom, Japan and the United States.
- MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.7 percent on Monday, poised for its second consecutive session of gains.
- Australian shares climbed 0.6 percent.
- Japan’s Nikkei added 0.7 percent.
- Chinese shares started firm with the blue-chip index rising 0.6 percent.
- Major currencies were treading water on Monday.
- The US dollar was mostly steady against the yen at 106.11, a long way from its low this year of 101.2.
- The euro was flat at $1.1849.
- The Australian dollar was barely changed at $0.728.
- The pound Sterling was a little higher at $1.2823.
- In commodities, US crude jumped 0.7 percent to $37.58 a barrel.
- Brent crude climbed 0.5 percent to $40 per barrel.
- Gold was firm, with spot prices at $1,949.7 per ounce.