Markets Overview

  • ASX SPI 200 futures up 0.6% to 6,969.00
  • Dow Average up 1.2% to 32,240.22
  • Aussie up 0.3% to 0.6718 per US$
  • U.S. 10-year yield rose 5.7bps to 3.4866%
  • Australia 3-year bond yield fell 17 bps to 2.84%
  • Australia 10-year bond yield fell 15 bps to 3.24%
  • Gold spot down 0.5% to $1,979.51
  • Brent futures up 1.0% to $73.73/bbl

Economic Events

  • 11:30: (AU) RBA Minutes of March Policy Meeting

Stocks finished higher as regulators worldwide rushed to shore up market confidence, with the recent financial turmoil spurring speculation on a slower pace of tightening from major central banks.

An earlier flight-to-safety bid waned, with all 11 groups in the S&P 500 gaining. A gauge of US lenders climbed after last week’s 15% rout. First Republic Bank plunged 47% to a record low, missing out on a rebound by its regional peers led by New York Community Bancorp. UBS Group AG rose as investors focused on the upside of its Credit Suisse Group AG takeover.

Following the biggest weekly surge for the Nasdaq 100 since November, the tech-heavy measure underperformed as a recovery in risk appetite sent Treasuries slumping. Global central banks witnessed no dash for dollars after uniting with the Federal Reserve to ease access to supplies of the US currency — an indication that the latest bout of banking turbulence may not be causing undue stress to the financial system.

Other News

Finland ranks as the world’s happiest country for the sixth consecutive year, an unprecedented feat in a list that’s now been published for more than a decade.

The World Happiness Report unveiled on Monday by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network showed Finland scores “significantly ahead of all other countries” in the ranking, followed by Denmark in the second place and Iceland in third.

“Income, health, having someone to count on, having a sense of freedom to make key life decisions, generosity, and the absence of corruption all play strong roles in supporting life evaluations,” the report said.

Israel climbed up five steps from last year to take the fourth place, followed by the Netherlands. The US was in the 15th spot in the ranking that showed a large gap remaining between the top and bottom countries. Lebanon and Afghanistan came last, while Lithuania was among the biggest gainers, climbing up more than 30 places since 2017 to rank number 20 now.

In general, life evaluations have continued to be “remarkably resilient” with global averages during the Covid-19 pandemic years of 2020 to 2022 as high as those in the preceding three years, the report said.