Korean stocks, won strengthens after President Park offers resignation

South Korean stocks and the won strengthened as Park Geun-hye, the country’s embattled president, said she was willing to relinquish power in the wake of a mounting corruption scandal that has gripped the nation. The benchmark Kospi was up 0.2 per cent in the wake of President Park saying she was willing to step down and her request for parliament…

European equities a global laggard on political risk

Donald Trump’s victory in the US elections has delivered a boost to some of the world’s most important equity markets. All of the major US stock indices hit record highs last week, as optimism over the performance of the US economy gathered pace. In Japan, a weak yen has helped propel the Topix index to its highest level since early…

Asia markets cautious as Wall St and dollar weaken

Tuesday 2.30am GMT Overview Markets across Asia were trading cautiously as Wall Street and the US dollar weakened overnight and the price of oil has pulled back. Hot topic Eyeing a possible third consecutive day of declines, the US dollar index was 0.1 per cent lower at 101.21 in Asian trade and was facing its longest losing streak since the…

Asian markets cautious as dollar continues retreat

Markets around Asia are trading cautiously as Wall Street and the US dollar weakened overnight and the price of oil has pulled back. Eyeing a possible third straight day of declines, the US dollar index is 0.1 per cent lower at 101.21 in Asian trade and facing its longest losing streak since the start of this month. The US dollar…

Lithium supply predicted to keep up with demand

The global market for battery chemical lithium is likely to remain “fairly balanced” for the next four to five years with supply rising to meet increased demand from electric vehicles, according to Albemarle, one of the biggest producers. Demand for lithium is likely to rise by 20,000 tonnes a year until 2021, Luke Kissam, chief executive of the US-listed company…

Tata agrees £100m specialty steel sale to Liberty House

Tata Steel has entered into exclusive negotiations to sell its specialty UK steel business for £100m to Liberty House, the metals group controlled by Indian-born commodities tycoon Sanjeev Gupta. The sale is expected to close in the first quarter of next year and could protect about 1,700 jobs, Liberty said in a statement. Tata’s mainly northern England operations will be…

Poor performance of flagship funds drags Man lower

Hedge fund manager Man Group hit a one-month low on Monday as worries grew about the poor performance of its flagship funds. AHL Diversified, Man’s biggest fund in its $2.2bn quantitative group, is down nearly 9 per cent in the year to date and is heading for its fifth annual decline in six years. The weak run puts it 20…

US energy shares rally to be shaped by Opec deal

Rising doubts that Opec will forge a pact to curb output at a meeting this week has sent market expectations for turbulence in oil prices climbing to the highest level in more than eight months. The CBOE’s OVX index has surged almost 20 points since late October to 51.6. That brings the measure of expectations for volatility in an exchange-traded…

Zimbabwe launches parallel currency to tackle cash crunch

Zimbabwe has begun issuing a controversial parallel currency designed to boost exports and ease the southern African nation’s severe cash shortage, as fears grow the move will backfire and lead to a repeat of the hyperinflation that crippled its economy eight years ago. In a weekend statement the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe said it would make US$10m worth of the…

Reshuffle on the cards for FTSE 100 shows 2016’s rough hand

The last reshuffle of 2016 for London’s main stock indices takes place on Wednesday, and some of the changes on the cards are very revealing about the hand dealt to investors in the final quarter of the year. One of the stocks most likely to drop off the FTSE 100 and into the FTSE 250 — precious metals miner Polymetal…