Asian markets set to rise as investors keep their eyes on geopolitical tensions.

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  • Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 jumped in early trade. Futures pointed to a higher open for Japanese shares as compared to the index’s last close. The Nikkei 225 had fallen 1.91% by Monday’s close.
  • Gold prices surged on Monday to a near seven-year high as investors fled riskier assets.
  • Oil prices, which have also gained on the back of those geopolitical tensions, continued to rally on Monday, rising more than 2% but settling little changed. In Asia morning hours, U.S. crude retreated from Monday’s prices.

Asian markets were poised to rise on Tuesday, after falling a day earlier, amid rising geopolitical tensions in the Middle East.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 jumped 0.86% in early trade. Futures pointed to a higher open for Japanese shares as compared to the index’s last close. The Nikkei 225 had fallen 1.91% by the close on Monday.

Gold prices surged on Monday to a near seven-year high as investors fled riskier assets amid U.S.-Iran tensions that have shot up in the past week with the killing of Iran’s top commander. 

Gold futures for February delivery settled up 1% at $1,568.80 per ounce and hit a high of $1,590.90 per ounce. That’s the metal’s highest level since April 2, 2013, when it traded at $1,604.30. Gold was also headed for its ninth straight day of gains.

Oil prices, which also surged on the back of those geopolitical tensions, continued to rally on Monday, rising more than 2% but settling little changed. In the morning during Asia hours, U.S. crude dropped 0.52% to $62.98 per barrel, retreating from Monday’s prices.

“Geopolitical tensions remain centre stage with markets clearly in wait-and-see mode,” Tapas Strickland, director of economics and markets at National Australia Bank, wrote in a note on Tuesday.

“The potential for this to spiral into a cycle of retaliation remains and markets will likely remain cautious,” Strickland said, referring to U.S.-Iran tensions.

U.S. markets rose on Monday, recovering from losses earlier on Friday, with gains led by big tech stocks.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the day up 68.50 points, or 0.2% at 28,703.38 after falling 216 points earlier in the day. The S&P 500 closed 0.4% higher at 3,246.28 while the Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.6% to 9,071.46.

Currencies

The U.S. dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of its peers, was last at 96.621, retreating from levels above 97.1 last week.

The Japanese yen traded at 108.39 against the dollar, weakening again from levels around 107.8 last week as investors sought the safe-haven currency. The Australian dollar was last little changed at around $0.6936.


Author: Austine