Global stocks up ahead of Obama meeting on budget

Global stocks rise ahead of meeting in Washington to try to end partial government shutdown

Associated Press

BANGKOK (AP) -- Global stock markets were mostly higher Thursday as President Barack Obama prepares to meet with top Republican leaders in hopes of ending an impasse over the nation's borrowing limit and resolving budget disagreements that have led to a partial shutdown of the federal government.

The government was forced to furlough workers and halt some services after Congress, bitterly divided over Obama's health care law, refused to approve a short-term funding measure to allow the nation to pay its bills as it entered a new fiscal year this month.

But hopes for a compromise ahead of the meeting between the U.S. president and GOP House leaders gave markets a reason to rise.

Michael Hewson of CMC Markets said in an email commentary that "there does appear to be some optimism" about the meeting.

Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.7 percent to 6,385.14. Germany's DAX added 0.9 percent to 8,595.93. France's CAC-40 gained 1.3 percent to 4,180.36. Wall Street also appeared set for a higher open, with Dow Jones industrial futures rising 0.7 percent to 14.824 and S&P 500 futures advancing 0.8 percent to 1,661.80.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei rose 1.1 percent to close at 14,194.71. South Korea's Kospi fell nearly 0.1 percent to 2,001.41. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 shed 0.1 percent to 5,147.10 after the release of worse-than-expected unemployment data. Benchmarks in Singapore, Indonesia and Thailand rose while mainland China fell.

Benchmark crude for November delivery was up 34 cents to $101.95 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell $1.88 to close at $101.61 a barrel on the Nymex on Wednesday.

In currencies, the euro rose to $1.3523 from $1.3517 late Wednesday in New York. The dollar rose to 97.83 yen from 97.54 yen.


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