European opened mixed Friday following an overnight session in Asia where the U.S. dollar once again dominated trading in global financial markets.
Britain's FTSE 100 added 5.1 points by 10:00 GMT as the benchmark hovered at the 7,000 point level for the first time since late October. Germany's DAX index fell around 13.1 points and France's CAC-40 fell 14.5 points. The region-wide Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell 0.24% and was quoted at 357.90 by 10:00 GMT.
Actelion rose 9.4% to change hands at an all-time high of Sfr215.88 each following a Bloomberg report that the group was in "advanced talks" with Sanofi that could lead to a $30 billion takeover.
The dollar surged to the highest since December 2002 against a basket of global currencies in overnight trading, taking the dollar index to 103.56 before easing to 102.88 as European trading kicked-off.
The consistent rise, linked to the U.S. Federal Reserve's signalling of as many as three interest rate hikes in 2017, has taken its toll on asset prices all around the world and helped push the European single currency to its lowest level against the greenback in nearly 14 years.
Japan's yen, as well, was also weakened by the dollar's rise, taking the currency to 118.03, the lowest since February, and helping the export-focused Nikkei 225 to its eighth consecutive gain. The benchmark added 0.7% to hit a 2016 of 19,401.15, capping a five-day advance of 2.1%. The broadest measure of regional shares outside of Japan, however, the MSCI Asia Ex-Japan Index, has lost around 1.7% this week in the wake of the dollar's resurgence.
China's Shanghai Composite Index added 0.17% on the session, but still booked a 3.4% decline for the week -- the steepest in 8 months -- amid a sell-off in the yuan and new restrictions on equity purchases for domestic insurance companies.
Oil prices remained largely unchanged in Asia trading as the dollar's rise held down gains and offset the impact of recently agree production cuts from both OPEC members and non-cartel partners. WTI futures for February delivery fell 1% to trade at $51.58 per barrel while Brent crude retreated 0.8% higher To $53.71.
Stocks rebounded on Wall Street Thursday after a knee-jerk selloff tied to the Federal Reserve's rate hike outlook in the previous session.
The S&P 500 0.53%, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.46%, and the Nasdaq rose 0.47%. The Dow was back on track to smash the never-before-seen 20,000 level, trading just 100 points below the milestone.
Futures prices suggest the Dow might make another run at 20,000 Friday, with the average called 17 points higher at the bell. The S&P 500 is called for a 0.69 point gain while the Nasdaq is priced to rise by around 0.2 points.