US stock market extended gains on Friday despite mixed data. The S&P 500 rose 0.4% to 3329.62, more than doubling its weekly gain to 2.0%. Dow Jones industrial added 0.2% to 29348. The Nasdaq gained 0.3% to 9388.94. The dollar strengthening accelerated as housing starts rose 16.9% in December while industrial production fell 0.3%. The live dollar index data show the ICE US Dollar index, a measure of the dollar's strength against a basket of six rival currencies, rose 0.3% to 97.61 and is higher currently. Futures in stock indexes point to lower openings today.
European stock indexes rebounded
European stocks rebounded on Friday after EU Trade Commissioner said he had a good exchange of views with US Trade Representative in Washington. GBP/USD joined EUR/USD's continuing slide on Friday with euro turning higher currently and Pound lower still. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index recovered 1%. The DAX 30 gained 0.7% Friday to 13526.13. France's CAC 40 rose 1% and UK's FTSE 100 advanced 0.9% to 7674.56.
Shanghai Composite leads Asian Indexes gains
Asian stock indices are mostly higher today. Nikkei edged up 0.2% to 24083.51 despite resumed yen climb against the dollar ahead of Bank of Japan's two-day policy meeting. China's markets are mixed: the Shanghai Composite Index is 0.7% higher while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index is down 0.9%. Australia's All Ordinaries Index extended gains 0.2% with Australian dollar climb against the greenback resuming.
Saudi Aramco slips while Brent gains
Brent futures prices are extending gains today. Prices rose on Friday: Brent for March settlement added 0.4% to $64.85 a barrel Friday. Saudi Aramco shares are down currently 0.2% to 34.30 riyals as they continue trading on country's Tadawul exchange. After the company sold 450 million more shares to investors as part of overallotment option (following 3 billion shares sales at 32 Saudi riyals ($8.53) each at the IPO that netted $25.6 billion ), Saudi Aramco has sold 3.45 billion shares, raising the company's public stake to 1.725% and raising its IPO earnings to $29.4 billion.
Gold prices are inching higher after closing lower last week. February gold slid 0.2% to 1550.50 on Friday.
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