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ASX futures, equities and U.S. dollar gain
A woman near an electric board showing Nikkei index at a brokerage in Tokyo, Japan. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
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  • ASX futures edged up six points or 0.08 per cent after global equity markets rose overnight Friday
  • The U.S. dollar rebounded against major currencies on Friday as new data strengthened concerns about surging inflation and more heated economic activity from pent-up demand
  • Brent rose 0.27 per cent, to settle at $69.65 a barrel, and U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude dropped 0.36 per cent, to settle $66.61 a barrel
  • Gold reversed rose above the key $1900 level on Friday, after data showed rising U.S. consumer prices in April and boosted bullion's appeal as an inflation hedge

ASX futures edged up six points or 0.08 per cent after global equity markets rose overnight Friday. The U.S. dollar rebounded against major currencies on Friday as new data strengthened concerns about surging inflation and more heated economic activity from pent-up demand.

A U.S. Commerce Department report showed that consumer prices accelerated 3.1 per cent in the year to April, exceeding the Federal Reserve's 2 per cent target and posting its largest annual gain since 1992.

Consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity, also rose at an 11.3 per cent annualized rate in the first quarter, positioning the economy for strong growth as rising vaccinations eases the pandemic's grip.

The dollar index of major currencies rose 0.043 per cent to 90.053 after making gains in early morning trading. The index is down 1.34 per cent for the month.

The benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury yield was lower at 1.5807 per cent from 1.61 per cent late on Thursday, compared with 1.6310 per cent at the end of April.

MSCI's broadest index of world stocks rose 0.31 per cent to 711.15. It was up 1.4 per cent for the month. European stocks gained 0.57 per cent to 448.98 and 2.65 per cent in May.

Multiple Federal Reserve officials came out last week to calm inflation jitters ahead of the release of Friday's report and signal a possible start to talks about tapering stimulus.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.19 per cent, to 34,529.45, the S&P 500 gained 0.08 per cent, at 4,204.11 and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.09 per cent, at 13,748.74 ahead of the Memorial Day holiday on May 31.

For the month, the Dow added 1.94 per cent, the benchmark S&P 500 rose 0.55 per cent, and the Nasdaq shed 1.53 per cent.

In Asia, Tokyo's Nikkei leapt more than 2 per cent, ending the month 1.17 per cent higher. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.46 per cent on Friday and 0.3 per cent for the month.

Gold reversed rose above the key $1900 level on Friday, after data showed rising U.S. consumer prices in April and boosted bullion's appeal as an inflation hedge.

Spot gold rose 0.38 per cent to $1903.3383 per ounce, having earlier dipped as much as 0.8 per cent. It has risen as much as 7.6 per cent during the month.

Oil prices inched higher on Friday, with Brent holding near $70 a barrel as strong U.S. economic data and expectations of a rebound in global demand outweighed concerns about more supply from Iran once sanctions are lifted.

Brent rose 0.27 per cent, to settle at $69.65 a barrel, and U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude dropped 0.36 per cent, to settle $66.61 a barrel. Brent and U.S. crude are up 3.57 per cent and 4.31 per cent, respectively, in May.

This week Australian investors will be watching CoreLogic’s monthly home value index, to be released on Tuesday followed by the RBA’s monthly policy announcement. On Wednesday Australia will get its Q1 GDP print.

Globally, key data will centre around US employment figures due out on Friday night.

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