July 10, 2016 - 7:30 PM EDT
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Asian Markets Rally After Upbeat U.S. Jobs Data

CANBERA (dpa-AFX) - Asian stock markets are significantly higher on Monday following a strong lead from Wall Street on better-than-expected U.S. jobs data that eased fears of an economic slowdown in the world's largest economy. Election results in Japan and Australia also lifted investor sentiment.

The U.S. Labor Department's jobs report said non-farm payroll employment surged up by 287,000 jobs in June versus economist estimates for an increase of about 180,000 jobs.

However, the report also said the uptick in jobs in May was downwardly revised to just 11,000 from the 38,000 originally reported. The unemployment rate rose to 4.9 percent in June from 4.7 percent in May, while average hourly employee earnings rose by $0.02 to $25.61.

The Australian market is notably higher in a broad-based rally, tracking the strong lead from Wall Street on Friday on upbeat jobs data.

News that Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has declared victory for the ruling conservatives after a closely-fought election also boosted investor sentiment. The election results end eight days of uncertainty about the new government's identity.

In late-morning trades, the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is advancing 90.10 points or 1.72 percent to 5,320.60. The broader All Ordinaries Index is up 87.60 points or 1.65 percent to 5,403.20.

In the mining space, BHP Billiton is rising more than 2 percent, Rio Tinto is adding almost 1 percent and Fortescue Metals is higher by almost 4 percent.

Gold miner Newcrest Mining is gaining more than 2 percent and Evolution Mining is higher by more than 4 percent.

In the oil sector, Oil Search is adding 0.4 percent, Santos is higher by 1 percent and Origin Energy is up more than 1 percent, after crude oil prices rose on Friday.

Among the big four banks, ANZ Bank and Westpac are rising more than 2 percent each, while National Australia Bank and Commonwealth Bank are up almost 2 percent each.

Construction firm CIMIC Group and its Chinese joint venture partner have won A$1.58 billion contract to build a 2.2 kilometer dual two-lane road tunnel in Hong Kong. Shares of CIMIC are adding more than 1 percent.

Primary Health Care lowered its profit outlook for the full year, citing writedowns within its business. Shares of the medical center operator are losing almost 3 percent.

Billabong has paid A$45 million to settle a shareholder class action suit over the timing of earnings downgrades that resulted in massive share price falls in 2011. The surfwear company's shares are declining more than 1 percent.

In economic news, Australia will see May figures for home loans today.

The Japanese market is sharply higher following the strong gains on Wall Street on better-than-expected U.S. jobs data. Expectations of new stimulus measures by the Japanese government after the ruling party's win in the Upper House election on Sunday also boosted investor sentiment.

In late-morning trades, the benchmark Nikkei 225 Index is adding 501.19 points or 3.32 percent to 15,608.17, off a high of 15,614.14 earlier.

Among the major exporters, Panasonic is higher by more than 6 percent, Sony is adding almost 3 percent, Toshiba is rising more than 2 percent, Sharp is advancing almost 2 percent and Canon is up more than 1 percent.

Market heavyweight Fast Retailing is gaining more than 3 percent and SoftBank Group is adding more than 4 percent.

Automaker Toyota is adding more than 3 percent and Honda is gaining almost 3 percent. In the banking space, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial is higher by more than 2 percent.

In the oil sector, Inpex and JX Holdings are advancing almost 2 percent each.

Among the other major gainers, J. Front Retailing and Konami Holdings are rising more than 6 percent each, while Showa Shell Sekiyu is gaining almost 6 percent.

In economic news, the Cabinet Office said that core machine orders in Japan declined 1.4 percent on month in May, standing at 785.0 billion yen. The headline figure missed forecasts for an increase of 3.2 percent following the 11.0 percent tumble in April.

The Bank of Japan said that the M2 money stock in Japan was up 3.4 percent on year in June, coming in at 940.6 trillion yen. That matched forecasts and was unchanged from the May reading.

The M3 money stock added 2.8 percent on year to 1,260.5 trillion yen, also in line with expectations and unchanged from the previous month.

Elsewhere in Asia, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Indonesia are rising almost 2 percent each, South Korea and Singapore are higher by more than 1 percent each, and Shanghai and New Zealand are up almost 1 percent each. Malaysia is also higher.

On Wall Street, stocks moved sharply higher on Friday following the release of a report from the Labor Department showing much stronger than expected job growth in the month of June. The report said non-farm payroll employment surged up by 287,000 jobs in June versus economist estimates for an increase of about 180,000 jobs.

The Dow jumped 250.86 points or 1.4 percent to 18,146.74, the Nasdaq spiked 79.95 points or 1.6 percent to 4,956.76 and the S&P 500 surged up 32.00 points or 1.5 percent to 2,129.90.

The major European markets also showed notable moves to the upside on Friday. While the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index advanced by 0.9 percent, the French CAC 40 Index jumped by 1.8 percent and the German DAX Index surged up by 2.2 percent.

Crude oil futures were slightly higher Friday after an upbeat U.S. jobs reports soothed post-Brexit fears. August WTI oil was up 27 cents, or 0.6 percent, to end at $45.41 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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Source: Equities.com News (July 10, 2016 - 7:30 PM EDT)

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