Copper climbed for the first time in three days and Asian currencies rose as investors anticipated more stimulus from the U.S. and China. Oil declined and shares of utilities and Chinese real-estate companies dropped.
Copper in London advanced 0.5 percent at 1:39 p.m. in Tokyo. South Korea’s won and Malaysia’s ringgit gained for a fourth day, while the dollar traded near a one-week low against the euro. Oil dropped from a seven-week high. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures fell 0.2 percent and the MSCI Asia Pacific (MXAP) Index was little changed.
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke, set to appear before a House committee today, told the Senate Banking Committee yesterday that policy makers are studying options for further easing that could include further purchases of assets. China’s State Council may announce measures to support growth after meeting today, according to analysts and state-run media. Premier Wen Jiabao said yesterday the labor situation will become more “severe,” underscoring concern that the weakest economic growth since 2009 will lead to increasing job losses.
“When the economy slows down and you don’t get enough jobs they expect the Fed to come up with miracles,” Kumar Palghat, founder of Kapstream Capital Pty, which manages A$4.5 billion ($4.5 billion) in Sydney, said in a Bloomberg Television interview. “Europe is really dragging the U.S. down as well, it’s not helping. The Fed can try whatever it wants but job creation is going to be tough.”