Last update: Tue, 25 Oct 2016 10pm

Stocks and Bonds: World


US stocks touched their highest levels in two weeks as a flurry of deal activity and strong quarterly earnings boosted investor confidence. Investors are also parsing quarterly earnings reports from companies. More than a third of the S&P 500 components are scheduled to report earnings this week, including heavyweights such as Apple and Boeing.

Tokyo shares edged up Monday after a see-saw session, with some investors keeping to the sidelines ahead of Japan Inc's latest earnings season. Video game giant Nintendo and copier maker Canon are among the firms reporting their financial results this week. The benchmark Nikkei 225 index recouped earlier losses to end up 0.29 percent, or 49.83 points, at 17,234.42. The Topix index of all first-section shares rose 0.17 percent, or 2.32 points, to 1,367.61.
Britain's top share index closed lower on Monday after energy stocks came under pressure following a drop in crude oil prices and gold miners tracked weaker precious metals. The bluechip FTSE 100 index finished 0.5 percent lower at 6,986.40 points, further away from a record high of 7,129.83 points reached on October 11. The FTSE 250 mid-cap index fell 0.4 percent.
European shares ended flat on Monday with continued gains in banks offset by weakness among pharma stocks, while Spain outperformed on signs of an end to a political deadlock. The pan-European STOXX 600 index ended flat at 344.26 points. The index is down 5.9 percent so far this year. The STOXX 600 Bank index rose 1.4 percent, making gains for the fifth session in a row and erasing all of its losses since Britain voted to leave the European Union in June.
Indian shares ended higher on Monday, driven by strong performances by ICICI Bank and Tata Motors, as investors gear up for a crucial week of quarterly results. The broader NSE index closed up 0.18 percent at 8708.95. The benchmark BSE index ended 0.36 percent higher at 28,179.08, after touching an over two-week high earlier in the session. Oil and Natural Gas Corp was the biggest percentage gainer on the indexes.
Sri Lankan shares closed Monday at their lowest in 12 weeks in lean trade as investors awaited cues from the central government budget and the five-year plan ahead of corporate results. Sri Lanka's quarterly earnings season started two weeks back, but the bulk of locally listed firms will not report until late October or early November. The national budget is scheduled to be presented on November 10.
China stocks ended Monday over 1 percent higher, bolstered by resources shares on signs that government efforts to reduce overcapacity in industries such as coal and steel were starting to bear fruit. The bluechip CSI300 index rose 1.2 percent, to 3,367.58, while the Shanghai Composite Index also gained 1.2 percent to 3,128.25 points.