Indian share indices ended in the red on Monday. Sensex hit a high of 54,931 and a low of 54,191 today before closing 38 points lower at 54,288.61. Metal stocks were hit hard as the government imposed export duty on 11 iron and steel intermediates. Most Asian stocks rose Monday after US President Joe Biden said he was considering lifting some Trump-era trade tariffs imposed on China, although concerns over inflation and growth weighed on sentiment.
Sensex, Nifty end in red
Benchmark Indian indices closed marginally lower on Monday in volatile trade, erasing robust gains made earlier in the day. While Sensex closed at 54,288.61, down 38 points, Nifty settled at 16,214.70, down 0.3%. Sensex hit a high of 54,931 and a low of 54,191 intraday. Metal stocks were the worst hit with Nifty Metal closing 8% lower as the government imposed export duty on 11 iron and steel intermediates. Tata Steel was the biggest laggard, ending over 12% lower. Auto, capital goods and IT indices outperformed, gaining 0.5-1%. Midcap and small-cap stocks also ended in the red today.
Family office of Gautam Adani to invest in Borouge’s $2 billion IPO: Bloomberg
The United Arab Emirates’ biggest oil company and Borealis AG are seeking to raise $2 billion from an initial public offering of their chemicals joint venture in Abu Dhabi, set to be the biggest ever listing in the emirate.
Axis Securities recommends ‘buy’ on Endurance Technologies
Endurance Technologies Ltd. (ENDU) reported a strong Q4FY22 performance, ahead of our estimates, primarily led by strong aftermarket sales, the addition of new products and improved realisations. The consolidated revenue stood at ₹2,079 Cr (our estimate – ₹1,804 Cr), up 10% QoQ. EBIDTA came in at ₹257 Cr (our estimate – ₹183 Cr), up 27% QoQ. EBITDA margin came in at 12.4% (our estimate – 10.1%) as compared to 10.8% in Q3FY22. The improvement was due to positive operating leverage and cost savings exercises undertaken by the company supported by higher realisations. PAT came in at ₹136 Cr, (our estimate – ₹71 Cr) up 44% YoY. ENDU has been a leading auto ancillary with expertise in manufacturing technology-oriented products viz., Aluminium casting, Suspension, Braking systems, and Transmission which happen to be crucial for the ride quality and performance of the vehicles. ENDU offers strong management, a diverse revenue profile, improved technological content, increased wallet share of customers, and financial discipline. The share of EV/Hybrid technology is expected to increase in the near future as the demand in Europe shifts towards less polluting vehicles to reduce carbon footprint. In this backdrop, we estimate consolidated Revenue/EBITDA/PAT to deliver a CAGR of ~14%/25%/29% over FY22-24E. Recovery in the underlying 2W demand, improvement in the EU business from Q2FY23E, and the possibility of new product technology are potential catalysts for the stock
· We maintain a BUY rating on the stock and value it at 27x FY24E P/E to arrive at a target price of ₹1,580/share ( ₹1,750/share earlier), implying an upside of 27% from the CMP.
Metals stocks start on a rusty note. Is the rally over?
Metals stocks started on a rusty note this week as 12 out of 15 stocks are trading in the red at the time of writing.
The leaders Tata Steel, JSW Steel, SAIL, and NMDC hit their new 52-weeks lows as government levied export duties on certain steel products.
Is the Metals rally over? (Read here)
Export duty hike on iron ore, pellets to raise costs for steel mills: Moody’s
Moody’s Investors Service on Monday said that the imposition of higher export tax on iron ore and several intermediate products like pellets will raise costs for steel mills.
However, strong domestic steel demand provides arbitrage opportunity for a portion of such exports to be diverted for domestic finished steel production, Kaustubh Chaubal, vice-president, corporate finance group, told Reuters.
Axis Securities has Buy recommendation on Ashok Leyland
Ashok Leyland Ltd (AL) reported a robust Q4FY22 performance, beating our as well as street estimates, primarily on account of healthy recovery in the commercial vehicle (CV) industry coupled with improved product mix and increase in ASPs. The net revenues stood at ₹8,744 Cr (our estimate: ₹8,205 Cr) as against ₹7,000 Cr in Q4FY21, reporting a 25% YoY growth led by robust growth in the MHCV segment and export business. The overall volumes increased by ~11% YoY to 48K units along with a 13% increase in ASPs led by a richer product mix and price increases post-transition to BS6 norms. The company’s Gross Margins contracted by 135bps YoY to 21.8% (our estimate: 22%) on account of higher RM cost inflation. AL reported an EBITDA of ₹776 Cr (our estimate: ₹606 Cr). This was mainly on account of positive operating leverage, cost savings measures, and a better product mix. The company reported PAT of ₹901 Cr while adjusted net profit stood at ₹572 Cr (our estimate: profit of ₹270 Cr) against a net profit of ₹215 Cr in Q4FY21. This was on account of adjusting the net exceptional gain of ₹470 Cr ( ₹542 Cr towards impairment reversal in the value of equity instruments in subsidiaries, ₹33 Cr related to the reversal of provision for obligation in relation to Optare Plc offset by ₹107 Cr towards loss on the fair value of investment). We expect the recovery in the CV demand to sustain and gain further momentum in FY23E and FY24E. The medium-term outlook remains strong given (1) Improving macro-economic factors; an increase in fleet utilization to drive replacement demand and the government’s thrust on infrastructure and scrappage policy; and (2) Potential pick-up in bus demand as travel restrictions ease off and schools, colleges, and offices reopen.
· Hence, we retain our BUY rating on the stock and keep the TP of ₹160 unchanged as we value the stock at 19x its FY24E EPS.
GDP growth may have declined to 3.5% in Q4: Icra
The country’s GDP growth may have eased to a tepid 3.5% in the Q4 FY2022 on account of higher commodity prices, decline in wheat yields and the hiccups in the recovery of the contact-intensive services, ratings agency Icra said.
The year-on-year (YoY) growth of the GDP and gross value added (GVA) at basic prices (at constant 2011-12 prices) in Q4 FY2022 seems to have eased to a tepid 3.5% and 2.7%, respectively, from the performance in Q3 FY2022 (+5.4% and +4.7%, respectively), according to Icra.
Most Asian markets gain
Asian stocks rose Monday after US President Joe Biden said he was considering lifting some Trump-era trade tariffs imposed on China, although concerns over inflation and growth weighed on sentiment.
Tokyo closed 1.0 percent higher, while Shanghai ended flat. Hong Kong fell 1.2 and Singapore was down 0.6 percent but most other Asian markets saw gains, with Seoul, Bangkok, Taipei and Mumbai in the green.
Sensex off day’s high in volatile trade
The many fallouts of excise duty cut on petrol and diesel
In order to control burgeoning retail inflation, the central government has cut excise duty on petrol and diesel by ₹8 per litre and ₹6 per litre, respectively. This reduction has led to prices of these fuels falling all across the country. All other things remaining the same, economists expect this to help bring down retail inflation by 20-40 basis points. (Full story)
PM Modi meets Softbank chief Masayoshi Son
“Further propelling Japanese investments in India…PM @narendramodi met Founder @SoftBank_Group Masayoshi Son and commended Softbank’s role in India’s startup sector,” MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi tweeted.
Indigo Paints’ stock has lost sheen, but there are some bright spots
The stock of decorative paints maker Indigo Paints Ltd hit a new 52-week low of Rs1,375.05 on the NSE on 12 May.
Compared to its stellar listing on 2 February 2021, the decline is much sharper. The stock closed at Rs3,117 on its listing day and had appreciated by 109% from its issue price of Rs1,490 apiece.
Investors are well aware that the paint sector has been grappling with severe cost inflation pressures in the last few months. Spike in crude price has pushed the cost of monomers higher. Further, the recent carnage in the midcap and smallcap stocks is said to have taken an additional toll on the shares of Indigo Paints, said analysts. (Read here)
Nifty Bank surges 1.5%; AU Bank, Indusind Bank top gainers
India govt will likely stick to fiscal deficit target, says RBI chief
The Indian government is likely to stick to its fiscal deficit target as specified in the budget and there may not necessarily be a need for increasing government borrowing just yet, governor Shaktikanta Das told CNBC-TV18 in an interview on Monday.
India on Saturday announced a series of changes to the tax structure levied on crucial commodities in a bid to insulate consumers from rising prices amid high inflation.
Winners and losers amid government’s measures to control inflation
Inflation has been a huge concern in recent months. In a bid to offer some comfort, the government has taken some steps. Excise duties on petrol and diesel have been cut. It has raised export duties on metals and lowered other import duties. Additional fertilizer subsidy of Rs1.1 trillion has been announced to cushion farmers against impact of rising global prices.
A few sectors stand to benefit from these moves, while others will suffer. (Full report)
Nifty IT up 1.4%
RBI Governor Das hints at rate hikes in next meetings
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is looking at more rate hikes in the next few meetings, said Governor Shaktikanta Das in an interview with CNBC TV18, adding that the central bank will also release a new inflation forecast at its June meeting.
Axis Securities on Lupin result
Lupin Q4FY22 results came out to be below our expectations. The company’s gross margin stood lower at 58%, registering a de-growth of 720bps YoY, primarily due to pricing pressure and cost inflation. R&D Cost is stable while Other Expenses have increased by 15% due to the impact to the tune of $10-11 Mn of Losartan recall expenses, 4 Mn of FTS penalties, and Solosec litigation expenses. The company’s EBITDA margins fell to 6.9% due to the above reasons while adjusted EBITDA margins stood at 9.5%, below our expectations. Lupin’s reported Q4FY22 revenue grew by 2.6%, majorly impacted by lower US sales, which stood at $181 Mn (-7.2%, YoY) despite traction in Albuterol, gBrovana, and AG products sales. India sales (35%) grew 5% YoY. Growth markets (10%) were up 25.6% YoY. RoW increased 103% YoY, and EMEA by 8.6% YoY while the API was down 13.8% YoY.
Lupin’s 4QFY22 EBITDA margins, adjusted for Losartan recall expenses, stood at ~9% and were significantly below our consensus expectations of ~13-14%. With intense price erosion continuing in the US market and limited new launches in 1HFY23, the company’s margins are expected to remain weak in the near term. While the management is banking on the Suprep/Spiriva launch in H2FY23 and cost optimization plans of ₹500-1,000 Cr (300-500bps of revenue) in FY23/24 to improve margins to ~18-20%, we remain sceptical given Lupin’s poor execution track-record over the past 3-4 years. In view of the prevailing lower margins and the stock’s limited triggers over the next 3- 4 quarters (before the launch of the key Spiriva opportunity), we maintain our HOLD rating on the stock with a revised TP of ₹670/share.
Biden says US military will defend Taiwan from China attack
US President Joe Biden said the U.S. military would intervene to defend Taiwan in any attack from China, some of his strongest language yet seeking to deter Beijing from an invasion.
Asked during a press briefing on Monday in Tokyo whether the U.S. would be willing to get involved militarily to defend Taiwan, Biden said “yes — it’s a commitment we made.” (Bloomberg)
Sensex at noon: Up nearly 500 points led by Maruti, L&T
Steel stocks slump on export duty jolt
Shares of major steel companies slumped on Monday following the government’s decision to impose export duty on 11 iron and steel intermediates and cut import duty on three key raw materials for steel production. Tata Steel Ltd, JSW steel Ltd, SAIL, Jindal Steel and Power Ltd fell over 10%, with hitting 52-week lows in opening deals on Monday. (Full report)
eMudhra IPO: Retail investors’ category fully subscribed
The initial public offering (IPO) of digital signature certificate provider eMudhra had opened for public subscription on Friday and and conclude on Tuesday, May 24, 2022. The firm has fixed a price band of ₹243-256 a share for its issue. It has raised ₹124 crore from anchor investors ahead of its issue.
OMCs keep petrol, diesel prices unchanged
Oil marketing companies –Indian Oil, HPCL and BPCL–kept the prices of petrol and diesel unchanged on Monday. The price of petrol in the national capital stood at ₹96.72 per litre, while diesel sold for ₹89.62 a litre.
Domestic fuel prices had declined on Sunday in line with the cut in excise duty. Analysts said a further reduction in retail prices is unlikely as global crude oil prices remain high and OMCs have accumulated under-recoveries.
On Saturday, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a reduction in central excise duty on petrol by ₹8 per litre and on diesel by ₹6 per litre. kept the prices of petrol and diesel unchanged on Monday. The price of petrol in Delhi now stands at ₹96.72 per litre, while diesel is sold for ₹89.62 a litre.
Yes Securities on Ashok Leyland
Ashok Leyland (AL) reported strong results led by ~8% QoQ growth in realisations at Rs1.79b (est at Rs1.65b). This was driven by higher MHCV volume mix at ~66% (v/s ~57% in 3QFY22) and price hikes (~2‐3% in 4Q). We are building in volume CAGR of ~26% over FY22‐24 with likely margins expansion to 10.1% by FY24 (v/s 4.6% in FY22 but ~80bp lower than FY19 peak). We believe AL’s de‐risking strategy to help as it reduces domestic MHCV exposure by adding new revenue pools such as LCVs (12‐13%), exports (9‐10% of sales) and spares (8‐9% of sales). We believe, sustenance of MHCV market share gains in 4Q (>30%) is likely led by new launches and network expansion. We upgrade FY23/24 EPS by ~7%/6% to factor in for better ASPs and cost sustainability. We re‐iterate BUY with TP of Rs163 (v/s Rs154 earlier, unchanged at ~13x of FY24 EV/EBITDA) and ~Rs13 for NBFC. AL continues to be one of our top picks among OEMs.
BSE SmallCap gains 124 points, Nilkamal jumps 12%
Prince Pipes & Fittings 4QFY22 Result Update: Mitul Shah – head of Research at Reliance Securities
Prince Pipes (Prince) reported an in-line performance in 4QFY22. Revenue increased by 18% YoY (up 36% QoQ) to Rs9bn (in line with our estimate of Rs8.6bn), led by 8.8% YoY growth in realization at Rs199/kg, while volume grew by 8.7% YoY at 45,287MT. EBITDA declined by 4% YoY and was up 26% QoQ at Rs1.4bn (our estimate of Rs1.3bn), while EBITDA margin fell by 370bps YoY to 15.6% (our estimate of 15.3%), primarily due to the higher raw material costs (72.7% of sales, from 65.2% YoY). PAT declined by 9% YoY and was up 31% QoQ at Rs882mn (in line with our estimate of Rs858mn). Expansion of distribution network combined with new product launches have driven the market share gains during the quarter. Prince has made a series of strategies to embark on its journey to the next level and sustain the business in the long run with a tie-up with Lubrizol and Tooling Holland. We expect Prince to expand its leadership with the manufacturing expertise, leveraged distribution and competitive agility in the pipes sector. For FY23E/FY24E, we lower our revenue estimates by 4% each factoring the lower realization and a high base. We reduce the EBITDA margin by 120bps/30bps to factor the lower margin due to lower pricing power, which leads to a lower EBITDA estimates of 11%/6% and PAT estimates of 17%/14% for FY23/FY24. In view of the healthy performance despite challenges, cost optimization measures and series of strategies for the next level of growth, we maintain our BUY rating on the stock, with a revised Target Price of Rs780 (from Rs1,000 earlier) and a revised target P/E of 30x FY24E earnings.
Single-digit Revenue Growth Expected in FY23E
The company reported a healthy performance in the past few quarters, aided by continued market share gains from unorganized players. Prince reported a healthy growth in value-added products and plumbing segments, which is expected to continue with its growth journey, led by a strong uptick in the real estate demand in major urban centres. The company is likely to deliver a single-digit revenue growth in FY23E. With strong business fundamentals and opportunities in India, the management remains optimistic on leveraging its strengths to achieve a higher growth. The Union Budget has provided a strong impetus on capex with higher allocation for Har Ghar Nal Se Jal scheme, which provides significant opportunities in the coming years. Prince expects to witness a structural improvement in demand in the coming years, led by an expansion in the urban, semi-urban and rural areas, and is investing in trending activities.
Outlook & Valuation
The government’s thrust on Jal Jeevan Mission, enhancement of agricultural credit and increased allocation for rural infra development fund augur well for the domestic PVC pipe manufacturers. The company continued to deliver a strong performance, led by the healthy growth in agri and plumbing segments, and aided with cost optimization measures. It has made a series of strategies to embark on its journey to the next level and sustain business in the long run, with a tie-up with Lubrizol and Tooling Holland. We expect Prince to expand its leadership with the manufacturing expertise, leveraged distribution and competitive agility in the pipes sector. In view of the healthy performance despite challenges, cost optimization measures and series of strategies for the next level of growth, we maintain our BUY rating on the stock, with a revised Target Price of Rs780 (from Rs1,000 earlier) and a revised target P/E of 30x (from 33x earlier) FY24E earnings.
Gold, silver prices rise in Indian markets
Gold and silver rates today edged up in Indian markets, tracking higher global rates in precious metals. On MCX, gold futures rose 0.32% to ₹51,000 per 10 gram while silver jumped 0.33% to ₹61,609 per kg. In global markets, gold edged higher to near $1,850 levels, boosted by a pullback in US dollar though higher US Treasury yields capped gains. A weaker dollar makes bullion more attractive for overseas buyers. The dollar index has recently pulled back as investors bet that easing lockdowns in China can aid global growth.
Maruti Suzuki jumps 4%; top gainer on bourses
Covid update: India reports 2,022 fresh cases, active cases fall below 15,000 in 24 hours
Market view: Sameet Chavan, Chief Analyst-Technical and Derivatives, Angel One
Our markets witnessed many twists and turns during the last week and on Friday the activity started with yet another gap; but this time it was fortunately on the higher side. This pleasant surprise picked up its momentum as the day progressed, to conclude the week convincingly above the 16200 mark.
The second half of the week went by and was full of dramatic twists and turns. Both counterparties were caught napping in all this but as we mostly say ‘All’s well that ends well’. Eventually the bulls turned out to be victorious as they managed to pull the Nifty back inside the safe terrain by gaining over 3% from previous weekly close. With reference to our previous week’s commentary, 15700 – 15600 stands to be a very solid support; because it coincides with the ’89-EMA’ on weekly chart who has proved its mettle many times over the past many years. Yes we are not completely out of the woods but at least we are well above the crucial support zone. On the flipside, the cluster of resistance is placed around 16400 – 16500 – 16600 and till the time we do not surpass it convincingly, one should avoid being complacent. At this juncture, we are clearly mirroring US markets’ sentiments and hence, if the market has to move higher, global relief is the key.
Let’s see how things pan out this week. It would be important to keep a regular tab on global developments and one should certainly be prepared for surprising moves on either side. As far as sectoral participation is concerned, we witnessed some decent relief moves in most of the beaten heavyweight spaces during the week. Also, the broader market has started to show some encouraging signs, which we believe should do extremely well if the market remains above the psychological support of 16000.
Rupee rises 4 paise to 77.66 against US dollar in early trade
Inflationary pressure dampen prospect for OMC: Avishek Datta, Research Analyst, Prabhudas Lilladher
* Inflationary pressures to limit OMCs ability to recoup high marketing losses; While excise duty cuts provide an elbow room for OMCs, only a meaningful correction in crude prices will help marketing margin recovery.
* Strong GRMs to partly compensate for OMCs marketing losses.
The government recently announced to cut excise duty on petrol and diesel by Rs8/6/litre given rising inflationary pressures. Accordingly, we cut FY23E earnings of HPCL/BPCL by 56-40% as we lower marketing loss for diesel to Rs3/litre (from +4/litre earlier), while increasing GRMs. OMCs ability to reduce high marketing losses of Rs6/10/litre for Q1FY23 on petrol and diesel will be contingent on crude price correction, as high inflationary pressure will prevent meaningful retail price hikes despite excise duty cuts. Also, despite excise duty cuts CNG remains cheaper by 22%/40% as compared to diesel/petrol in Delhi. City Gas Distribution (CGD) player like IGL is expected to benefit from private vehicle conversion. Reiterate ‘BUY’ on CGD companies. IGL remains our preferred pick. Oil India will be hit by reduction in excise duty as Numaligarh Refinery retains 50% of duties, however, higher product spreads will partly compensate for duty cuts.
Taxes rolled back to limit inflationary pressures: Government has decided to cut excise duty on petrol and diesel by Rs8/6/litre given rising inflationary pressures (previously duty cut of Rs5/10/litre on petrol and diesel in Nov-21). Post duty cuts, excise duty on petrol and diesel now stands at Rs19.9/15.8/litre vis-à-vis pre duty cut rates of ~Rs32.0/litre. We calculate revenue loss of Rs900bn, because of latest excise duty cuts and over Rs2.1trn due to two rounds of duty cuts. Excise duty on petroleum products is a major source of revenue for the government; Rs2.6trn for 9MFY22 and Rs3.7trn in FY21.
Marketing losses remain steep, but inflationary pressure to limit price hikes: Duty cuts provide an elbow room to companies for raising prices and making up for lower margins. But with inflationary pressures, only a meaningful crude price correction will help OMCs to improve marketing margins. In Q1YTD sharp rise in petrol and diesel prices has led to drop in average marketing margins to – Rs6/10/litre (vs loss of ~Rs2.5/litre in Q4FY22).
Refining spreads of petrol and diesel in Q1FY23 have increased to over USD40/bbl from Q4 average of ~USD16/bbl. Accordingly, we don’t expect OMCs to fully pass on marketing losses considering their high earnings from refining space. For FY23E we increase our refining margin estimates, while factoring in marketing margins loss of Rs3/litre for diesel.
Fuel economics to support continued switch to CNG: CNG demand has recovered sharply, as economic activity picked up post pandemic. Favorable fuel economics – CNG being cheaper to diesel/ petrol by 40%/22% in National Capital Region post excise duty cuts, will drive demand for CNG among private vehicles.
Tata Steel plunges 12% as export duty imposed on 11 iron and steel intermediates
Nifty Auto outshines; jumps 1.8% led by Ashok Leyland, Maruti
Nifty Metal down 6.5%; Tata Steel, Jindal Steel, NMDC biggest laggards
Sensex opens in green but gives up gains; Tata Steel top loser
Sensex, Nifty open higher
Sensex up at pre-open; Tata Steel down
BHEL added to list of 5 stocks under F&O ban on NSE today
A total of five stocks have been put under the ban for trade on Monday, May 2, 2022 under the futures and options (F&O) segment by the National Stock Exchange (NSE). These securities have been put on ban under the F&O segment as they have crossed 95% of the market-wide position limit (MWPL), as per the NSE.
Delhivery IPO: Latest GMP, market experts predict ‘weak’ debut of shares
Delhivery IPO listing: Share listing date of Delhivery is fast approaching as most likely Delhivery IPO listing date is 24th May 2022. According to stock market experts, company’s financials are poor and the company’s public issue is price at high valuation as well. They said that market sentiment is highly volatile and hence Delhivery shares may have a weak listing. Meanwhile, grey market sentiments are also not encouraging for the public issue. As per the market observers, shares of Delhivery are available at a discount of ₹5.
Cryptocurrency prices today surge. Bitcoin above $30,000; Terra rallies over 70%
Cryptocurrency prices today surged with Bitcoin trading above the $30,000 mark. The world’s largest and most popular cryptocurrency surged over 2% and was trading at $30,034. Though, it is down 36% so far this year, and trading far below the peak of $69,000 it hit in November 2021.
Day trading guide for Monday
5 stocks to buy or sell today — 23rd May
Gold hits over 1-week high as dollar weakens
Gold prices touched a more than one-week high on Monday, as an easing dollar continued to support greenback-priced bullion, although higher U.S. Treasury yields capped gains. Spot gold rose 0.2% to $1,848.96 per ounce, by 0201 GMT. Prices hit their highest since May 12 at $1,853.55 earlier in the session. U.S. gold futures gained 0.4% to $1,847.90.
Wheat, soybeans edge higher on weather woes, firmer oil prices
U.S. grains futures edged higher on Monday, lifted by a weaker dollar, an upside in crude oil and as adverse weather conditions threatened production in key producing countries.
* The most-active wheat contract on the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) was up 0.98% at $10.80-1/4 a bushel, as of 0146 GMT, after falling 0.74% last week.
* Corn rose 0.71% to $7.84-1/4 a bushel and soybeans edged 0.62% higher to $17.15-3/4 a bushel.
* Growing conditions for wheat and barley crops in France fell sharply for a second straight week, data from farm office FranceAgriMer showed on Friday, as a hot spell exacerbated drought in the European Union’s biggest grain producer.
* Higher oil prices further supported prices of corn, which is used to make alternative fuel ethanol.
Oil climbs in tight market as US driving season looms
Oil prices rose in early trade on Monday with U.S. fuel demand, tight supply and a slightly weaker U.S. dollar supporting the market, as Shanghai prepares to reopen after a two-month lockdown fuelled worries about a sharp slowdown in growth.
Brent crude futures rose 82 cents to $113.37 a barrel at 0126 GMT, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures climbed 69 cents, or 0.6%, to $110.97 a barrel, adding to last week’s small gains for both contracts.
“Oil prices are supported as gasoline markets remain tight amid solid demand heading into the peak U.S. driving season,” said SPI Asset Management managing partner Stephen Innes.
“Refineries are typically in ramp-up mode to feed U.S. drivers’ unquenching thirst at the pump.”
The U.S. peak driving season traditionally begins on Memorial Day weekend at the end of May and ends on Labour Day in September.
Stocks steady as China sours mood; Dollar dips
Asian stocks traded mixed Monday as investors assess the impact of China’s Covid policies on growth and the outlook for the world’s largest economies. The dollar and Treasuries retreated.
Equities rose modestly in Japan, but a slide in Chinese tech stocks and a virus outbreak in Beijing weighed in Hong Kong and China. Nasdaq 100 and S&P 500 futures jumped about 1% after the S&P 500 dropped for a seventh straight week in a stretch of weakness not seen since 2001.
Beijing reported a record number of Covid cases, reviving concerns about a lockdown. China’s stringent Covid Zero policy has stifled economic growth and prompted banks last week to cut a key interest rate for long-term loans by a record amount.
Dollar wobbles lower as China growth hopes lift Aussie
The dollar began the week on the back foot, following its first weekly loss in nearly two months, as investors cut bets on further dollar gains from rising U.S. rates and turned hopeful that loosening lockdowns in China can help global growth.
U.S stock market futures bounced sharply in early Asia trade and pulled the risk-sensitive Australian and New Zealand dollars along for the ride.
The Aussie was last up 0.4% at $0.7080 and has lifted 3.8% in a week and a half. The kiwi rose 0.6% to $0.6450, a three-week high.
“It’s a reasonably positive start to the week,” said National Australia Bank’s head of foreign exchange strategy, Ray Attrill.
“We did have a sharp reversal of U.S. equity market weakness in the last hour or so on Friday, so maybe there’s some momentum there,” he added. “The U.S. dollar looks, for the time being, to be losing upside momentum.”
The euro and yen rose, with the yen up 0.1% to 127.83 per dollar and the euro up 0.2% at $1.0586 following last week’s 1.5% gain on the dollar.
The U.S. dollar index fell 0.1% to 102.790, about 2% beneath a two-decade high of 105.010 made earlier in May.
Asia markets tussle with inflation and rates concerns
Asian stocks faced an uncertain start on Monday as persistent inflation fears and the prospect of rising interest rates dogged the global economic outlook, which remains mired in negative sentiment.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 0.04% higher, after U.S. stocks ended the previous session with negligible gains for the day. The index is down 3.6% so far this month.
In early trade, Australian shares gained 0.2% while Japan’s Nikkei stock index was 0.85% higher.
The yield on benchmark 10-year Treasury notes rose to 2.7883% from its U.S. close of 2.787% on Friday.
The two-year yield, which rises with traders’ expectations of higher Fed fund rates, touched 2.5869%, up from 2.583%.
Uncertainty in market sentiment this week follows the S&P 500’s meagre gains on Friday of just 0.01%.