Sat, 11 Jul 2020

NEW YORK, New York - U.S. markets welcomed a breakthrough in the ongoing Brexit saga with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson announcing a deal had been struck with the European Union for an orderly departure on 31 October.

The deal still needs to be ratified by the British parliament, and the Northern Ireland party has already announced it opposes the deal.

Positive earnings results domestically buoyed U.S. stocks.

At the close of trading Thursday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI was ahead 23.9 points, or 0.09%, at 27,025.88.

The Standard and Poor's 500 rose 8.26 points, or 0.28%, to 2,997.95.

The Nasdaq Composite climbed 32.67 points, or 0.4%, to 8,156.85.

On foreign exchange markets the British pound had a wild ride. On news of the Brexit deal, sterling zoomed up to 1.2990. As Northern Ireland voiced its opposition the pound fell back below 1.2800. However as the day wore on confidence grew that Johnson would win the day when parliament debates and decides on the deal on Saturday.

Around the New York close Thursday, the pound was changing hands at 1.2863. By early trading in Asia on Friday, the pound had cruised higher to 1.2890.

The euro was also stronger, fetching 1.1125 early Friday. Thje Japanese yen edged up to 108.63, while the Swiss franc climbed to 0.9879.

The commodity currencies all gained ground with the Canadian dollar rising to 1.3140, the Australian dollar to 0.6824 and the New Zealand dollar to 0.6343.

In overseas markets, the FTSE 100 in London surprisingly only managed a 0.20% gain, while in Europre stocks fell. The German Dax lost 0.12%, while the Paris-based CAC 40 declined 0.42%.

On Asian markets, the Nikkei 225 in Japan was down 21.06 points or 0.09% at 22,451.86.

Australia's All Ordinaries gave up 51.20 points or 0.76% to 6,791.50.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng jumped 184.21 points or 0.69% to 26,848.49.

China's Shanghai Composite was down 1.38 points or 0.05% at 2,977.33.

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