Asian shares poised for gains, tracking Wall Street's lead amid firm dollar

Asian stocks looked set to follow Wall Street higher on Thursday, with the small-cap Russell 2000 notching a record close as the yield on the U.S. 10-year Treasury stayed above 3 percent.

Nikkei futures traded in Chicago were up 0.5 percent at 22,830 compared to the benchmark’s previous close. Australian SPI futures were 0.18 percent higher at the end of the last session.

On the earnings front, Singapore Airlines is slated to release full-year results later in the day.






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U.S. stocks closed higher on Wednesday, with retail sector stocks climbing following strong results from department store company Macy’s.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 0.25 percent, or 62.52 points, to 24,768.93, the S&P 500 tacked on 0.41 percent to end at 2,722.46 and the Nasdaq composite advanced 0.63 percent to 7,398.30. Also of note, the small-cap Russell 2000 added 1 percent and finished at a record close.

After surging past the 3 percent level on Tuesday, the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note rose to a fresh near seven-year high. The 10-year Treasury yield on Wednesday surpassed the 3.1 percent level for the first time since Jul 8, 2011.

In Europe, stocks mostly finished the day higher despite the move higher in Italian bond yields. Italy’s FTSE MIB, however, declined 2.32 percent as the right-wing Lega party denied reports that it’s seeking a 250 billion euro ($296 billion) debt write-off if it becomes part of a power-sharing deal with the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement.

Meanwhile, President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that whether his planned meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un goes through remained to be seen. Earlier, North Korea said it would rethink the June 12 summit if the U.S. insisted on denuclearization.

The dollar index, which tracks the U.S. currency against a basket of major currencies, last stood at 93.392 after rising to a five-month high of 93.632 overnight. Gains in the greenback in recent week come amid expectations that the Federal Reserve will be more hawkish than other central banks.

Against the yen, the dollar traded at 110.28 at 6:55 a.m. HK/SIN.

On the energy front, U.S. crude futures settled 18 cents higher at $71.49 per barrel and Brent crude futures added 85 cents to settle at $79.28.

What’s on tap 

Here’s the economic calendar for Thursday (all times in HK/SIN):

  • 7:50 a.m.: Japan machinery orders
  • 8:30 a.m.: Singapore non-oil domestic exports
  • 9:30 a.m.: Australia unemployment rate
  • 6:00 p.m.: Indonesia central bank interest rate decision

— CNBC’s Thomas Franck and Silvia Amaro contributed to this report.

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