Overseas Trading: Oil Lifts Global Stocks; Japan Slapped By Stronger Yen

Most global markets are higher as optimism over a possible production freezes boost oil prices

by Karee Venema

Published on Mar 18, 2016 at 8:41 AM

Most Asian markets followed U.S. stocks higher today, as oil prices rose amid a weakening dollar and hope that a global production freeze will be discussed at an upcoming meeting between members and non-members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). At the close, China's Shanghai Composite was up 1.7% following a report that showed February home prices surged by their highest margin since June 2014, Hong Kong's Hang Seng tacked on 0.8%, and South Korea's Kospi rose 0.2%. Japan's Nikkei, however, shed 1.3% -- its fourth straight daily loss -- as the strengthening yen continued to drag on exporters.

European stocks are up at midday, as crude futures rally. Additionally, stocks are reacting to European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi's warning to European Union (EU) leaders that the central bank's aggressive stimulus measures would not be enough to boost the economy. Against this backdrop, London's FTSE 100 is up 0.3%, while the French CAC 40 and the German DAX are each flirting with 0.2% gains.

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