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China data boosts copper; world stocks hit record

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07/17/2017 | 10:33pm CEST
Traders work on the floor of the NYSE in New York

Copper prices surged to their highest levels in more than four months after robust data supporting China's economic growth, while a gauge of global stocks marked a record high for a third straight session.

China's economy expanded at a faster-than-expected 6.9 percent clip in the second quarter, setting the country on course to comfortably meet its 2017 growth target.

The U.S. dollar fell to a 10-month low against a basket of currencies before steadying, while oil prices shed about 1 percent.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan <.MIAPJ0000PUS> hit a two-year high, as MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe <.MIWD00000PUS> gained 0.08 percent and set a record.

Wall Street ended little changed as investors braced for a flood of second-quarter earnings reports later in the week.

"Our view is that right now the equity market is a one-legged stool that's driven by earnings and we're pretty optimistic about earnings but if that should falter, the market will falter," said Dave Donabedian, chief investment officer of CIBC Atlantic Trust Private Wealth Management.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> fell 8.02 points, or 0.04 percent, to 21,629.72, the S&P 500 <.SPX> lost 0.13 points, or 0.01 percent, to 2,459.14 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> added 1.97 points, or 0.03 percent, to 6,314.43.

Shares of BlackRock (>> BlackRock) fell 3.1 pct after the quarterly report from the world's biggest asset manager fell short of Wall Street's forecasts.

Analysts expect that earnings for S&P 500 companies rose 8.2 percent in the second quarter, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Emerging market stocks rose 0.40 percent.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index <.FTEU3> lost 0.04 percent. Shares of miners Anglo American (>> Anglo American) and Glencore (>> Glencore) gained, supported by the strong China data and rising copper prices.

Copper <CMCU3> rose 1.08 percent to $5,989.75 a tonne, touching its highest level since early March, as the economic data from top consumer China helped reinforce expectations of strong demand.

"There's a bid across the complex on the Chinese data," said Macquarie analyst Vivienne Lloyd.

Among other commodities, U.S. crude <CLcv1> fell 1.18 percent to $45.99 per barrel and Brent <LCOcv1> was last at $48.39, down 1.06 percent.

Investors continued to await strong indications that an OPEC-led effort to drain a glut was proving effective but output increases in some top producers eased, keeping losses in check.

Spot gold <XAU=> added 0.4 percent to $1,234.02 an ounce.

Investors were also digesting U.S. data from Friday pointing to tame inflation and soft domestic demand that diminished prospects of a third interest rate increase from the Federal Reserve this year.

Expectations for another Fed rate hike in December stand at a less than 50 percent.

Benchmark 10-year notes <US10YT=RR> last rose 2/32 in price to yield 2.3141 percent, from 2.319 percent late on Friday.

The dollar <.DXY> fell 0.05 percent against a basket of currencies, dropping to a 10-month low during the session, with the euro <EUR=> up 0.14 percent to $1.1483.

"The markets are not convinced the Fed is going to be tightening rates anytime soon," said Vassili Serebriakov, FX strategist at Credit Agricole in New York. "In that kind of an environment, the dollar is struggling."

For graphic on global foreign exchange rates, click: http://tmsnrt.rs/2kIQHol

For graphic on global interest rates, click: http://tmsnrt.rs/2uC4MeU

For graphic on emerging markets in 2017, click: http://tmsnrt.rs/2q4eow9

(Additional reporting by Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss and Sam Forgione in New York, Tanya Agrawal in Bengaluru and Marc Jones and Pratima Desai in London; Editing by Andrea Ricci and Nick Zieminski)

By Lewis Krauskopf

Stocks treated in this article : BlackRock, Anglo American, Glencore
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