Global stocks up on US housing, Ukraine diplomacy

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

BEIJING (AP) — Global stock markets rose Tuesday on improved U.S. housing sentiment and news of diplomatic efforts to broker a cease-fire in Ukraine.

KEEPING SCORE: In morning trading, France's CAC-40 rose 0.5 percent to 4,252.32 and Germany's DAX gained 1 percent to 9,334.55. London's FTSE 100 rose 0.5 percent to 6,773.25. Futures pointed to gains on Wall Street. Dow futures rose 0.3 percent to 16,846 and S&P 500 futures gained 0.3 percent to 1,973.10.

ASIA'S DAY: Tokyo's Nikkei 225 added 0.8 percent to 15,449.79 and China's Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.3 percent to 2,245.33. Taiwan's Taiex climbed 1.1 percent to 9,243.78 while India's Sensex gained 0.2 percent to 26,454.99. Seoul, Sydney and Southeast Asian markets also rose.

UKRAINE: Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said issues related to sending a humanitarian convoy to Ukraine were resolved following weekend talks in Berlin with his counterparts from Ukraine, Germany and France. Germany's Frank-Walter Steinmeier reported progress on "some issues," though Lavrov said there was no movement on establishing a cease-fire between the government and pro-Russian rebels.

THE QUOTE: "Markets started the week on a firm note as investors took positively the talks between Russia and Ukraine over the weekend even though no major breakthrough was reached," said Credit Agricole CIB in a report.

U.S. HOUSING: A survey showed sentiment among home builders improved in August for a third month. Mizuho Bank said that suggests housing is "experiencing a broad-based revival," which might bring forward plans by the Federal Reserve, which has cited housing as a concern, to raise interest rates.

CHINESE HOUSING: Housing prices fell in July for a third month, with declines recorded in 64 out of 70 cities, compared with 55 in June, official data showed. Regulators are trying to restrain surging housing costs with building and purchase curbs while avoiding an abrupt slowdown that could send shockwaves through the economy.

LOOKING AHEAD: The U.S. government was due to announce monthly inflation Wednesday and the Fed was due to release minutes on Wednesday from its July policy meeting. Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen speaks Friday at an annual gathering of central bankers in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and is expected to affirm her position that Fed should keep monetary policy loose to respond to a slack labor market.

CURRENCIES: The dollar was little changed at 102.60 yen from late Monday's 102.63 yen. The euro fell to $1.3349 from Monday's $1.3361.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude for September delivery was up 63 cents at $97.04 in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract shed 94 cents on Monday to $96.41, its lowest level since April, as fears of disruption in supplies from Iraq eased. Brent crude rose 27 cents to $101.87.