Wall Street futures surged in pre-market trading Tuesday as global stocks pushed further into uncharted territory as investors extended bets on a strong corporate earnings season and price-in the impact of a weakened U.S. dollar and recent tax reform on international sales .
Early indications from U.S. equity futures suggest another super-charged session on Wall Street, with contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average rising 247 points from their Friday close and those tied to the broader S&P 500 gaining 13 points, or 0.47%, from their previous record highs. If futures hold, the Dow would open above 26,000. Fourth quarter earnings are expected Tuesday from UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH) - Get Report and Citigroup (C) - Get Report , with analysts now forecasting S&P 500 earnings to collectively rise around 12.1% over the three months ending in December following stronger-than-expected reports from JPMorgan & Chase Co. (JPM) - Get Report and PNC Financial (PNC) - Get Report last week.
The MSCI All World Index recorded its third consecutive all-time high Tuesday, rising 0.09% to 535.98 as stocks in Asia continued to extend gains amid the ongoing U.S. dollar weakness.
In Europe, the Stoxx 600 index, the broadest measure of regional share prices, gained 0.34% in the opening hours of trading, with benchmarks around the region rebounding amid a pullback in the single currency, which eased to 1.2228 after touching the highest levels since December 2014 in Monday trading.
Britain's FTSE 100 was similarly affected, given the pound's surge to a post-Brexit vote high of 1.3809 yesterday, and slipped 0.04% in early trading thanks in part to a 1.61% slump for BP plc (BP) - Get Report after the oil major revealed a further $1.7 billion hit to its fourth quarter earnings linked to the deadly 2010 Deepwater Horizion oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
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However, a softer-than-expected reading for core inflation in the month of December, which slowed to 2.5% from 2.7%, trimmed the currency's gain to 1.3762 and tipped the FTSE into positive territory.
Overnight in Asia, stocks pushed higher into record territory after breaching their all-time peak Monday thanks in part to a weaker U.S. dollar and surging commodity prices, which helped lift oil to the highest level in three years.
In Tuesday trading, however, the dollar's decline stabilised somewhat, although the dollar index, a benchmark of the greenback against a basket of six global currencies is still sitting within touching distance of its December 2014 low at 90.60, helping Japan's Nikkei 225 surge 1% to close at the highest level since 1991.
The broadest measure of regional stocks, the MSCI Asia ex-Japan index, was marked 0.44% higher into the close of trading thanks in part to a record close for the Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong, which jumped 1.8% to end the session at 31,904.75 points.
Oil prices were mixed after touching three-year peaks on Monday, as investors calibrated bets on renewed demand for crude in an accelerating global economy while accounting for an increase in U.S. drilling installations and production rates reported last week.
Brent crude contracts for March delivery, the global benchmark, were seen around 30 cents lower from their Monday close at $69.94 per barrel while WTI contracts for the same month added around 7 cents to $64.37 per barrel.
Bitcoin prices continued to plunge Tuesday, falling to the lowest levels since early December and extending their bear-market decline to nearly 40% as regulators around the world line-up to caution on cryptocurrency speculation.
Bitcoin was marked around $2,000, or 14.5% lower from its Monday close in early trading on the Bitstamp exchange in Luxembourg, which feeds prices into the CME Group futures contract, and were changing hands at $11,900 by 04:00 am eastern time. Prices hit a 24-hour trough of $11,191.50, according to bitstamp data, the lowest since Dec. 5 and 38.8% from their Dec. 16 peak.