Asian stocks rallied and the yen retreated from a seven-week high against the dollar as the Bank of Japan concludes its monetary policy meeting and investors awaited Chinese trade data. U.S. stock futures and crude oil gained while natural gas futures extended declines.
Japan’s Topix Index added 0.4 percent by 9:53 a.m. in Tokyo, paring back yesterday’s 3.2 percent slump and stoking a 0.2 percent advance in the MSCI Asia Pacific Index of regional equities. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (SPX) futures rose 0.2 percent after the index slipped 0.4 percent in New York. The yen weakened 0.4 percent after gaining 3.3 percent versus the greenback over the past four days. Gas futures sank for the 11th time in 12 days, while West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.2 percent. Most industrial metals climbed.
While all economists surveyed by Bloomberg predict Japan’s central bank won’t expand stimulus today, most expect the record easing that has damped yen strength and helped the Topix gain the most among major developed markets this year will be extended by June. Chinese exports probably rose 2 percent in July, after falling the prior month, according to a Bloomberg survey before today’s report. The U.S. issues jobless claims data today as Federal Reserve officials reiterate asset purchases could be slowed on an improving employment market.
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